5 February 2020

With Richard Di Natale retiring — good riddance — the Greens have turned to Adam Bandt for leadership. Contrary to Anthony Albanese’s strange (but telling) criticism, I think “strong rhetoric that has people who agree with you agreeing with you even stronger” will be good for the Greens, and I think Bandt’s so-called “watermelon” background means he will be better able to grapple with the issues facing working people — including the industrial issues facing communities on the front line of the climate transition we need to make. Bandt’s priorities of free education and a manufacturing renaissance show he has plans to address this vulnerability. (My only concern is that the concept of a Green New Deal is being turned into a generic Greens election slogan — for example, while expanding Medicare to cover dental services is unequivocally good policy, I can’t see why it is a pillar of Bandt’s version of a Green New Deal.)