There's an inherent problem when your Party's best and brightest young woman is Kelly O'Dire.
I agree with the proposition that you pick your best people for the gig, however, it doesn't happen now anyway as there are always trade offs between factions, people to whom you owe favours and balancing unofficial quotas between, for example, states.
The issue I suppose is whether it's right to draw a line between these things and balance them up, but not worry about it when it comes to gender. It's an interesting problem.
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I agree on the whole with those that are arguing against quotas and affirmative action here etc. However to state that the cabinet has been chosen on merit is a bit misleading. Underperforming people were kept on, and as Spikey and Burgey have pointed out, factions, states of origin etc. all play a part too.
I understand Benchy's point that the shadow cabinet got the Coalition in to Parliament, so why should it have changed. Well I guess the question is (as PEWS said so), why is it that the shadow cabinet didn't have as many females? Not in terms of why didn't Abbott choose more females in his shadow cabinet, but why aren't the Liberal Party getting higher performing females? You can't just ignore the issue. But I also agree you can't just simplify it by saying Abbott should have chosen more females either. Its a broader issue.
To deny that this is a bad look for the Coalition is putting your head in the sand though. It is not a good start.
Last edited by Jono; 17-09-2013 at 10:40 PM.
jono throwing down the gauntlet here
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The actual selection of the Cabinet isn't the issue though; the issue is what's caused it. The chances of 18 of the best 19 being men by pure coincidence are basically too minute to bother considering so while I don't think Abbott has made any wrong choices, it suggests there's a problem with women being promoted within the party on merit further down the chain or (IMO the biggest factor) enticing as many capable women to the party who want to ambitiously pursue politics as men in the first place.
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