25 August 2010

Australia's Unsettled Election

[UPDATE 8/26: The Economist has a nice overview.]

Australia's election outcome remains uncertain, with a few seats left to be decided, but no chance for an overall majority in parliament.  The three independent members of parliament, who have the power to decide the next government and thus have been called "kingmakers," have issued a set of requests to Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Coalition leader Tony Abbott (here in PDF), which will surely be taken seriously.  They ask for answers by September 3, suggesting that Australia's leadership will remain in doubt for a few more weeks.

Political pundits are already trying to assess winners and losers from the election.  Some think that the Green party, which holds the balance of power in the Senate and a key seat in the lower house, has emerged a winner, others think not.  This implications of the election for Australia's climate policy remain completely unclear, though the context remains unchanged.  Meantime, as the video above shows, the Aussies are keeping their sense of humor (H/T Lowy Institute).