He’s our new Prime Minister, so who the heck is Scott Morrison?

Scott Morrison

 

He is Australia’s sixth prime minister in 11 years… but who is Scott Morrison?

We’ve pulled together all you need to know about our new prime minister.

Who is Scott Morrison?

The 50-year-old grew up in Sydney’s eastern suburb of Bronte. His mother worked in administration and his father was a policeman who later worked as a local-government councillor. Together, they ran Church youth programs.

Morrison met his wife Jenny Warren at their church when they were both just 16 years old. They married five years later and have two daughters, Lily and Abbey.

He has an honours degree in applied science from the University of NSW.

He was a CEO and senior executive in various industry bodies and government agencies, both within Australia and overseas. His previous positions include director of New Zealand’s Office of Tourism and Sport and managing director of Tourism Australia.

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Morrison entered parliament in 2007 after winning the seat of Cook in Sydney’s south-eastern suburbs.

He served as immigration minister and social services minister under Tony Abbott and in 2015 he become Treasurer under Malcolm Turnbull.

Scott MOrrison
Incoming PM Scott Morrison is congratulated by his new deputy Josh Frydenberg. Image: Getty.

Where does Scott Morrison stand on the big issues?

Immigration.

Morrison takes a hardline on immigration policy. He was behind Operation Sovereign Borders, the government policy led by the Defence Force that aimed to 'stop the boats'.

During his time as Immigration Minister, Morrison was widely criticised for refusing to provide details about matters within his portfolio. He refused to answer questions about the status of asylum seekers or boats coming to and from Australia saying he would not discuss "on water" matters.

In 2014 the Australian Human Rights Commission delivered a report to the government which found the Morrison failed to act in the best interests of children in detention during his time as minister.

He passed a bill that same year that gave him the power to return asylum seekers to where they came from, detain them without charge and refuse entry to anyone who arrived by boat. This gave him more power than any previous immigration minister.

Economics.

Morrison delivered three budgets as Treasurer in which the budget's bottom line has vastly improved.

He was one of the key advocates for the government's big business tax cuts, which Turnbull threw out earlier this week. The draft laws intended to cut the tax rate for companies that turn over more than $50 million annually down from 30% to 25%.

He refused to increase the welfare safety net, leaving Newstart untouched in his budgets.

"My priority is to give tax relief to people who are working and paying taxes," he told Buzzfeed after delivering this year's budget.

Climate change.

Morrison has generally avoided talking about his stance on climate change, although he regularly criticises Labor's greenhouse gas reduction target of 45% and considered the Coalition's target of 26%, which was this week scrapped from the National Energy Guarantee, as responsible.

In February 2017 Morrison brought a lump of coal into the House of Representatives and said: "This is coal. Don't be afraid, don't be scared. It won't hurt you."

Social issues.

Morrison voted no in same-sex marriage postal survey and was one of 10 Liberal MPs to abstain from the same-sex marriage vote.

He was a big advocate for a religious safeguard amendment to be added to the law change.

"It all starts when you allow religious freedoms [to be eroded], mockery to be made of your faith or your religious festivals – it always starts innocently and it’s always said it is just a joke – just like most discrimination does," he told Fairfax last December.

“And I’m just going to call that out. With what I’ve seen happen in the last year, I’ve just taken the decision more recently, I’m just not going to put up with that any more, I don’t think my colleagues are either."

Morrison is a supporter of removing GST from pads and tampons and has said it never should have been applied in the first place.

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