1. We may well have a new Prime Minister by the end of this week, with Australia’s most prominent political commentators all predicting a spill for the Labor leadership in the coming days. While most still favour Kevin Rudd as the likely candidate against Julia Gillard, new rumours are emerging today that former leader Simon Crean could be winning some internal support.
2. The House of Representatives have begun passing the Government’s controversial media reform package. So far they have agreed to two bills but reports suggest that the Government are unlikely to secure the passage of the remaining bills, including one that would create a public interest media advocate.
3. Australian researchers are recommending mothers-to-be get vaccinated against whooping cough before giving birth or getting pregnant. Scientists at The University of Sydney found babies whose mothers were vaccinated against whooping cough were 50 per cent less likely to contract the potentially deadly disease in the first four months of their lives.
4. An 18-year-old man in the US has been forbidden from saying the word “bingo” for the next six months. Austin Whaley was cited for second-degree disorderly conduct after he walked into a bingo hall with some friends and yelled “bingo” and “caused the hall to quit operating since they thought someone had won”. The police officer who gave him the citation said: “Just like you can’t run into a theater and yell ‘fire’ when it’s not on fire, you can’t run into a crowded bingo hall and yell ‘bingo’ when there isn’t one.”
5. Pope Francis has officially begun his papacy. The new pontiff addressed around 200,000 at his inauguration at The Vatican overnight. Tomorrow he’ll have lunch with Benedict XVI, who resigned from his papacy last month.
6. Australia’s head swimming coach Leigh Nugent has reportedly been dropped in the wake of Australia’s performance at the 2012 London Olympic Games. Nugent was appointed to the top job in 2009. He was told on Monday that he would no longer be required.
7. Saudi Arabian women are planning to protest the country’s ban on female drivers. They’ve created a Facebook group called the “Women2Drive campaign” and as part of the protest, women who have drivers licences from other countries are asked to drive around the streets of Saudi Arabia on June 17. Under South Arabian law, women are forbidden from getting behind the wheel.
8. Gerard Baden -Clay has been committed to stand trail for the murder of his wife, Allison Baden Clay. Mrs Baden -Clay’s body was found in a Brisband waterway 10 days after her husband reported her missing last year. In court the chief magistrate said: ‘‘I’m of the opinion the evidence is sufficient to put the defendant on trial on the offences charged.”