Tony Abbott runs away … from Craig Thomson. The Opposition leader long said he’d never accept newly independent Craig Thomson’s vote, which explains why he sprinted for the door today when Thomson crossed over to his side of the parliament to vote on a gag debate. Abbott wanted to leave to negate Thomson’s vote but once a division is called MPs votes are counted inside the locked chamber. The Opposition’s Chris Pyne made it out. He said it was all a ‘Labor stunt’.
Here’s what else is on our radar today:
1. An Aussie digger has risked his life to save a wounded Afghan soldier after a vehicle he was standing near struck a roadside bomb. The Aussie soldier was knocked to the ground by the first blast, but rushed to the vehicle to pull the wounded Afghan soldier free. Then that vehicle, carrying ammunition, exploded and the digger suffered blast wounds. Both are in a stable condition.
2. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange lost his bid to stay in London and will be extradited to Sweden to face charges of sexual assault in that country’s court. Assange can appeal to the European Court of Human Rights.
3. Stop being mean to Kiwis, says John Howard. The former PM says Australians are patronising toward their counterparts across the ditch and don’t value the relationship between the two countries highly enough.
5. Aussie retailers might finally be discovering … online retail. Target announced together it would spend $20-30 million restructuring and offering 60,000 products for sale online. Similar moves are being made by Myer and David Jones.
6. Shooters allowed in national parks. The New South Wales Government has struck a deal with the Shooters and Fishers party which would allow them to hunt and cull feral pests in 79 of 799 NSW national parks, including Kosciusko and Barrington Tops, in exchange for votes to pass legislation allowing them to sell electricity generators worth $3-5 billion.