It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
New South Wales Premier Bob Carr has announced his resignation from politics, effective from next Wednesday. "There is never a perfect time in these things but we've decided the time has come and so today I announce my retirement as Premier and Member for Maroubra," he said.
"Only one other leader in modern New South Wales politics has had the privilege of serving 10 years at the helm - that was Neville Wran, and like Neville, I face the challenge of deciding when to move on."
Mr Carr says he made the decision on a sparkling Sydney day at the weekend in consultation with his wife, Helena. "I do so in the spirit of Lincoln's second inaugural address, with malice for none [and] charity to all," the Premier said.
His decision - news of which began filtering through to news outlets around 10am - came as a shock to political observers. The presenter of the ABC's Insiders program, Barrie Cassidy, told ABC radio: "This is an absolute bolt from the blue."
Property vendor duty will be abolished under the leadership of incoming NSW Premier Morris Iemma.
Mr Iemma made the announcement after being formally elected as the state's 40th premier at a Labor caucus meeting today.
"I announce today that the vendor duty will be abolished," Mr Iemma told reporters.
"[It will be] effective for all contracts exchanged on or after today."
"It's not a decision that I have taken lightly and it will have an impact on revenues."
Senior Labor figures had said Mr Iemma would roll back controversial property and poker machine taxes as part of his pitch for the state's top job.
NSW Premier-elect Morris Iemma wants Planning and Infrastructure Minister Craig Knowles to stay on in a senior government role, despite speculation Mr Knowles will resign tomorrow.
Mr Iemma is finalising his cabinet and will announce a new ministerial line-up tomorrow, when he is sworn in as premier.
However, Mr Knowles is understood to be considering resigning before the announcement.
Mr Iemma said he had a discussion with Mr Knowles yesterday and would support whatever decision he made, but wanted him to continue in government.
"I want Craig to serve as a senior member of the government," Mr Iemma told the Seven Network.
"I do know that he is considering his future, but I support whatever decision he makes."
Transport Minister John Watkins is tipped to become the next deputy premier, replacing Andrew Refshauge, who today announced he was following Bob Carr into retirement.
Sydney Morning Herald
Mr Iemma's decision to take on the treasury portfolio follows today's sudden resignation announcement by Treasurer and Deputy Premier Andrew Refshauge.
"I've taken the Treasurer's job because it is part of my approach of accountability," he said.
He rejected suggestions he was taking on the Treasury portfolio to head off a battle among his party colleagues for the job, or that he would be overextending himself with both roles.
Sydney Mornng Herald
NSW state Liberal MPs will meet on Thursday to elect Peter Debnam as their new leader.
Former leader John Brogden has been released from Sydney's Royal North Shore Hospital following an apparent suicide attempt at his electorate office.
The Liberals cancelled plans to elect a new leader, instead holding a morning tea to console each other and discuss the events of Tuesday night.
John Anderson walked away from the second-highest job in Australian politics yesterday - blaming a worsening stress-related prostate condition for his decision - and anointed Mark Vaile as his successor.
The Deputy Prime Minister revealed he had battled the debilitating illness for 12 years, but in recent times it had reached a point where "enough was enough".
Mark Latham has announced he is resigning from the Labor leadership and from Parliament, saying he is too unwell to continue in the job.
"Public office can take it out of people and after 17 years and two serious life-threatening illnesses, the time has come to put my family and my health first," Mr Latham said.
The move puts an end to several weeks of speculation over his leadership, which began after he became ill with a second bout of pancreatitis around Christmas.
Mr Latham says he had planned to reassess his future when he returned from annual leave next week but ongoing speculation was damaging the party.
"In recent days, I have been able to get away, rest and recover and talk to my family about our priorities for the future," he told a media conference in Sydney.
"Our conclusion is that I should look after my health and pursue a normal life outside of politics. Therefore, I have decided to resign both as Labor leader and Member for Werriwa."
Now, out comes the spin doctor. Out come the Howard spin merchants talking about secret agreements between China and Australia and the United States. The fact of the matter is there is a well-worked out scheme now associated with the Kyoto Protocol. All over Europe now and in relations between Europe and China and 10 States of the United States who have bolted away from Washington, including the "Governator" State in California, they are all getting a market-based solution in place with trading on greenhouse gas omissions. And Australia, under Howard, is missing in action. This cannot be sustained. And the time has come now for people to walk away from John Howard's spin on all of this and look for achievement. And, when you look for achievement in this area, all you get is a mess. All you get is a vacuum. Now, John Howard must immediately sign Kyoto. His own report says it.
JOURNALIST: What is wrong with this idea of a climate pact?
BEAZLEY: You have got a climate pact called Kyoto. That is what you have got. You have got 10 States in the United States effectively signing up to that and joining in an emissions trading regime. You have got Europe and China, which are supposed to be in this pact, Europe and China already sitting down and talking their way through an emissions trading regime. The Chinese may be chatting away in secret to us but they are acting with the Europeans. That is what they are doing and we are not there. And in a world that we face as we deal globally with greenhouse gas omissions, the wealth opportunity, the opportunity of protecting jobs, the opportunity to ensure that your people still maintain a decent lifestyle as we get to grips of the economic issues - that is all around the emissions trading system. And unless you are in Kyoto or signed up seriously to Kyoto, you are not in business.
JOURNALIST: But surely it is better than nothing?
BEAZLEY: It is nothing. It is spin. That is what it is. It is spin to cover the fact. That is the spin they wanted to leak after they discovered the leak they didn't want to get out there being the Allen Report. So, one is the leak that they put out there which is the spin - the secret agreement. The other is the leak that they didn't want out there which is the Allen Report which says that the Australia we know is dead in 30 years time.