|Australia's New Government|
If one might have recalled, the elections that was held in the country last Aug. 21 resulted in a so called hung parliament. This was after neither the ruling Labor Part nor the Liberal Party was able to gain a majority in the House of Representatives. The stalemate lasted for almost two weeks, as both parties attempted to negotiate with the elected independent representatives for support.
Finally, on Sept. 7, Rob Oakeshott and Tony Windsor, two of the four independents have announced that they have pledged support to Labor. Another independent, Adam Bandt, has already said before the election that he will be supporting Labor in case of a hung parliament. Representative Bob Katter was the only one who went with the Liberals.
With Labor staying in power, Julia Gillard also gets to remain as the Prime Minister. However, some political analysts argue that her new three year term would be quite a shaky one. They pointed out that the the results of the elections, where Labor was unable to secure a majority, is a clear indication that the support for the party has indeed been cut down by a significant portion. This, they said would greatly affect the level of acceptance of the government's policies.
Some observers also pointed out that the independent block in the parliament would now be a significant power broker. With the effort put by both parties into courting these independents, it is likely that they will again use this advantage to push their own agendas. Thus, the Gillard administration will have to closely take into consideration the independents' recommendation in formulating its policies.
However, despite this seemingly tight predicament, Gillard herself is very confident that her administration will be able to pull through for the next three years. She also welcomed the new setup, saying that it is a good indication that the the political landscape in the country has indeed changed a lot and that she would take this into consideration. She also added that this is a good opportunity for them to work out better policies for the country.
However, since it is just a few weeks into the new administration, it is hard to see how this would actually affect the actual policy making. And with that, observers and the Australian public are hoping that everything does indeed go out well.