Kevin Rudd And Julia Gillard Were The Divorced Parents At Labor's Campaign Launch And This Isn't Awkward At All

    *rocking back and forth* It's OK, the election is next week, It's OK, the election is next week...

    What you need to know:

    - New polling shows Labor still ahead on a two-party preferred basis, with leader Bill Shorten's gap to Scott Morrison as preferred PM either shrinking or widening, depending on which poll you believe

    - Labor held its official campaign launch in Brisbane with former prime ministers Paul Keating, Julia Gillard and Kevin Rudd all in attendance

    - George Christensen's music video has been removed from YouTube and Facebook after a complaint was lodged against him

    - Shorten was declared the winner of the second leaders' debate on Sky News Friday night. A third debate is probably talking place on Wednesday

    - Bill Shorten is appearing solo on Q&A tonight. Morrison is on 7.30

    Happy Monday everyone! I hope you all had a good weekend. Great news — the election is next week! Bad news — there's still a hell of a lot to get through before we're there.

    Darren England / AAPIMAGE

    On Friday we were focused on all those candidates resigning and the Vegemite recipe. Today is a brand new day, full of promise and hope — let's see if the nation's politicians have managed to live up to it...

    Mick Tsikas / AAPIMAGE

    First up — Labor's official campaign launch took place in Brisbane yesterday. Here are former prime ministers Kevin Rudd, Julia Gillard and Paul Keating super happy to be together. Nothing to see here, all totally normal.

    Lukas Coch / AAPIMAGE

    Cute. Mum and Dad spent years slugging it out in Family Court, but they are coming to the wedding!

    A united team was clearly one of the main themes of Labor's campaign launch, but there were also a number of new announcements.

    Party leader Bill Shorten announced new incentives for small businesses to take on younger and older staff involving a tax deduction on new staff salaries; promised more money for hospital emergency departments; and pledged to curb multinational tax avoidance.

    Labor used the launch to emphasise the differences between the main parties and Shorten described the contrast in climate change policies between Labor and the Coalition as like "night and day, black and white".

    The full costing of Labor's policies is expected to be released at the end of this week. The Liberal party is also expected to hold its campaign "launch" next weekend, one week before the election.

    Will they replicate the former prime ministers picture? Uhhh, no, because Malcolm Turnbull is spending the campaign in New York. Classic Malcolm.

    There were a fair few digs at their opponents during Labor's launch, with the party's Senate leader Penny Wong calling prominent members of the Coalition "small men with small ideas".

    Penny Wong condemns Tony Abbott, Barnaby Joyce, Scott Morrison and Michael McCormack as “small men with small ideas” #ausvotes #LaborLaunch

    And deputy leader Tanya Plibersek called prime minister Scott Morrison a "failed ad guy" and declared: "Bill [Shorten] hasn’t spent this campaign shearing sheep and bleating about tax." A reference to this remarkable incident:

    An audible intake of breath from the Prime Minister’s staff as he turns his hand to shearing on a property north of Dubbo @politicsabc #ausvotes

    Keating gave an interview with the ABC, which started like this:

    That moment when a former PM surprises you on air @andrewprobyn: You snuck up behind me Paul Keating: I've done that a bit of that in my life

    Keating unloaded his usual number of zingers, including this attack on Morrison: "There's the prime minister walking around with a lump of coal. Coal is a fossil. The prime minister is a fossil himself, a fossil with a baseball cap, but a fossil."

    He also, remarkably, called Australia's spy chiefs "nutters" over the current approach to China and claimed the agencies were running foreign policy. Keating said they had gone "berko" over the threat of Chinese interference.

    "They've lost their strategic bearings, these organisations," he said, calling on Shorten to "clean them out" if he wins the election.

    Home affairs minister Peter Dutton demanded on Monday that Shorten reveal what plans he and Keating have discussed for the department and Australia's intelligence roles.

    Plibersek said Keating is known for his colourful language but he doesn't run Labor policy.

    Keating's predecessor Bob Hawke was unable to make the campaign launch, but Shorten referenced him on stage, declaring: "Bob, we love you, and in the next 13 days we are going to do this for you."

    Prime minister Scott Morrison announced over the weekend increased penalties for online bullying and a push for tighter security settings for online gaming.

    Mick Tsikas / AAPIMAGE

    On Monday, up to $5 million was pledged by the Coalition for the Australia Made campaign to help promote Australian products.

    A Manufacturing Modernisation Fund was also promised by Morrison, which will aim to encourage investment in new technologies.

    The Coalition came under continued pressure today to release the costings of its tax cuts for high-income earners after Morrison was unable to provide a figure last week.

    At the weekend, treasurer Josh Frydenberg released a statement about his election billboards being defaced with Nazi symbols and condemned the "disturbing trend in society of antisemitism and intolerance".

    My statement following the latest act of vandalism in Kooyong:

    "This latest act of vandalism in Kooyong using Nazi symbols on a billboard of mine is an insult to every victim of the Holocaust and Australian servicemen and women who fought against Nazi tyranny," he said.

    "To think that this cowardly and criminal act was committed just days after Holocaust Remembrance Day shows how ignorant the perpetrators are of the horrors of history.

    "This incident is not about me or my campaign, but about a broader and disturbing trend in society of antisemitism and intolerance.

    "Mutual respect is at the heart of a good society and let’s debate ideas and people’s words and records, but let’s not as a community accept for one minute this type of behaviour or attitude."

    Liberal MP Julian Leeser revealed that his posters had also been targeted. "I have been involved in political campaigns in Berowra for 15 years but I have never seen anything like this before," he said.

    Berowra MP Julian Leeser's campaign office in Thornleigh has been defaced with anti-Semitic graffiti

    Both major parties strongly condemned the vandalism.

    @JoshFrydenberg Utterly unacceptable. This desecration of the posters of @JoshFrydenberg is to be condemned in the strongest possible terms.

    New polling has been released (what an evergreen statement that is) that shows the main parties basically in the same position as the last polling. Labor has maintained its lead.

    #Ipsos Poll Federal 2 Party Preferred: L/NP 48 (+1) ALP 52 (-1) #auspol

    The Ipsos polling saw a tightening in the preferred PM polling.

    #Ipsos Poll Preferred PM: Morrison 45 (-1) Shorten 40 (+5) #auspol

    The Newspoll data did not. So who knows what's going on.

    #BREAKING: Labor's primary vote drops and Bill Shorten's approval rating falls as the two party preferred split remains unchanged #Newspoll #ausvotes

    Some members of the Murdoch press were not happy with how everything is going and decided it was clearly all the fault of... the voters.

    BOLT'S OPINION: I blame voters. They’re turning this election campaign into one of our most dishonest, irrational and frightening. They are turning this election toxic by rewarding conmen, hysterics and bullies. They are accepting what they should reject.

    This probably isn't helping sway any undecided voters.

    The economy is strong with this one. #StarWarsDay #MayThe4thBeWithYou

    But to be fair, neither is this.

    Please make it stop.

    Last time they were in government, Labor delivered 6 record deficits totalling $240 billion. Australia can’t afford to go back to Labor. #StarWarsDay #MayThe4thBeWithYou

    On Friday evening, when everyone was down the pub enjoying their lives, Morrison and Shorten slugged it out in the latest leaders' debate. This was the moment Morrison fronted Shorten during an exchange over tax. The latter called the PM a "space invader".

    .@ScottMorrisonMP: For those earning over $40,000 to $200,000, the bill is $96bn in personal income tax cuts. Watch now: #AusVotes #PeoplesForum

    It was a line the Labor leader was clearly rather proud of. So he tweeted this out on Saturday.

    I’ve been taking on space invaders all my life.



    He’s totally going to try and double down on the space invader thing and ruin it though.

    We then had Morrison comparing Shorten to Pac-Man and honestly I wanted to be fired into the Sun in a rocket to avoid having to follow any more of this.

    Scott Morrison has laughed off Bill Shorten’s space-invader comments at the debate, comparing him to “pac-man” who is going to eat up everything you’ve earned.... Not sure how long we can keep extending these computer game metaphors for. Two weeks to go. @politicsabc

    It just won't end.

    The Prime Minister on Bill Shorten, via 2GB: "He was talking about space invaders the other day. The only space he's going to invade is people's wallets." #auspol

    As we know, and have extensively documented, the PM loves to have a go (and get a go) and his cup cake decorating skills were pretty impressive during the weekend.

    Whatever you think of the PM or his policies, this is a very impressive decorating effort from the Prime Minister

    Oh and remember that video George Christensen released of himself singing a rewritten version of the classic Australian song "I've Been Everywhere"? Yeah, well Sony/ATV wasn't impressed and it's been pulled after a cease and desist letter was sent to the conservative MP. Oh dear.

    Exclusive: Sony/ATV's Damian Trotter said he found it "ironic and disturbing that an Australian politician responsible for legislation in the parliament should have such flagrant disregard for the law”.

    Tonight Morrison is on 7.30 and Shorten is on Q&A. The PM apparently doesn't want a go on the latter.

    We’ve just received word from the PM’s office that @ScottMorrisonMP will not appear on #QandA during this election campaign #auspol

    And no-one can seem to decide on what to do with the third leaders' debate on Wednesday.

    UPDATE: Labor is digging in, demanding a panel. So the format remains the sticking point which means the debate’s still up in the air. #auspol

    That's it folks, check back tomorrow lunchtime to discover all the latest madness from the election campaign.

    Richard James is the News Director for BuzzFeed Australia and is based in Sydney.

    Contact Richard James at

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