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The Week in Politics

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The Week in Politics Malcolm Turnbull met Donald Trump.

The meeting, which took place earlier today on the USS Intrepid, a decommissioned aircraft carrier moored off Manhattan, covered the predictable topics: North Korea; Syria and Iraq; and trade.

No doubt there was also discussion of China and possibly refugees.

Malcolm Turnbull has now become Donald Trump’s newest friend but he probably didn’t learn anything that he hadn’t gleaned from Vice President Pence’s visit a couple of weeks ago.

It’s been a week of whirlwind activity by the government as it tries to get the tough issues like education reform out of the way so that they don’t overshadow the budget announcements.

They’ve managed the process reasonably well and the ability to communicate policy detail makes the vacuous last election campaign even more difficult to understand.

Labor looked uncomfortable in its response to the revised Gonski arrangements, rejecting reforms that were close to their own because there wasn’t enough money in the pot.

As Simon Birmingham pointed out they could put more money in if they were eventually in government.

A sideshow was created by Miranda Devine’s suggestion that Tony Abbott should be made Governor General in order to stop him running interference with the government’s message.

Reports were that the Prime Minister did not rule out the idea but in fact he adhered to the principle that vice regal appointments should not be discussed.

In the end Mr Abbott killed the idea by saying he wasn’t interested in the job.

From the Gallery

• On Tuesday the Embassy of Poland in Canberra held a reception to mark the 226th Anniversary of the Polish Constitution and the official visit of Polish Minister for Foreign Affairs Mr Witold Waszczykowski.
• The Leader of the Opposition Bill Shorten was in Sydney on Wednesday where he gave a pre-budget address to the McKell Institute at PriceWaterHouseCoopers in their new Level 17 office in James Packers new development at One International Towers, Watermans Quay, Barrangaroo in Sydney.
• Assistant Minister for Cities and Digital Transformation Angus Taylor MP addressed Corinium’s CDAO Forum on BigData, Analytics, Customer and Digital relations on Wednesday in Sydney saying “reform is better driven by the customer than anyone else” in relation to Woolworths.
•Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection Alex Hawke MP gave a keynote address to BasisPoint’s lunch seminar on significant investment at Daltone House in Hyde Park in Sydney. Mr Hawke said “The Australian Government is committed to the ongoing success of the Business Innovation & Investment Programme”.
• Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne MP was in Launceston on Wednesday where he officially opened the Launceston Naval Shipbuilding Industry Briefing at the Australian Maritime College.
• The Prime Minister has announced that entries are now open for the 2017 Prime Minister’s Literary Awards which celebrate great Australian literature.
• The annual gathering of the Perth based Diplomatic Corps took place on Tuesday night. The event included about 25 Perth based diplomats.
• Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop has met with new New Zealand Foreign Minister Gerry Brownlee at the Commonwealth Parliamentary Offices in Sydney on Thursday. This is the first meeting between the two Foreign Ministers since long serving NZ Minister of Foreign Affairs Murray McCully officially stepped down two days ago on the 2nd of May.
• The government has on Thursday released their response to the Productivity Commission’s inquiry into Business Set-up, Transfer and Closure.
• Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne hosted an event announcing a joint industry initative between SAAB and University SA on Thursday.
• Senator James McGrath announced Mr Michael Manthorpe PSM as the new Commonwealth Ombudsman on Wednesday.

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