Julia Gillard has become the first elected female PM after independent MP’s Rob Oakeshot and Tony Windsor threw their support behind Labor in a press conference in Canberra today.
Rob Oakeshot and Tony Windsor will support Labor in matters of supply and confidence in parliament, but both were clear to point out that their choice to side with Labor was not due to their political philosophy, but was due to the deal they struck with Julia Gillard and their belief that Labor would be more likely to form a stable and effective Government.
Both Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshot felt Labor’s proposed National Broadband Network was a key policy that would bring substantial benefits to their rural electorates, particularly with regards to education in the bush.
“Do it once, do it right, do it with fibre” said Windsor in the press conference.
The promises made by Labor to Oakeshot and Windsor for his electorates are believed to be worth up to $10 billion.
Tasmanian independent MP Andrew Wilkie from the seat of Denison has come out to reiterate his position and his intention to negotiate independently with the Labor Government and not simply vote with Labor on their policy.
“I will not block supply, will not support unwarranted no confidence motions” said Wilkie.
“I am very confident that not only will this parliament will last three years, but will be one of the most productive in many years”
Greens leader Senator Bob Brown believes Rob Oakeshot and Tony Windsor made the right decision by supporting Julia Gillard and Labor, with the Green’s numbers in the Senate likely playing on the independents minds when making their choice.
“I’ve spoken with all three of them, but the Greens have obviously impressed Australians with how we have behaved in the Senate”