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Australian Election 2016: Who Won the Week?

The Sex Party's Nevena Spirovska, astrophysicist Alan Duffy, and editor Roj Amedi weigh in on their favourite auspol moments.

Run Reucassel ticks off Shorten. Image via

Alan Duffy says The Chaser's Craig Reucassel For Literally Chasing Bill Shorten

Honestly, I do sympathise a little with the politicians, it's tough to know in-depth every detail of a party platform. This is why parties often create listicles of key messages, such as the Liberal's "six-point plan." If you don't know those then you perhaps deserve some mocking. However, by releasing "100 Positive Policies" (100!), Labor appeared to be setting itself up for a "gotcha" moment.

Cue the Chasers' Craig Reucassel, who asked Bill Shorten to go recite them all. Then—in one of the most surreal bits of political comedy this election has seen— Reucassel jogged after Bill's motorcade, all the while the Opposition Leader listed off policies through the car window. To his credit, the Opposition Leader got a passable 13 out of 100, although I think he may have been cheating in this test, as his chief-of-staff passed him the answers. More importantly Bill endured it with good grace.


Perhaps he realised Craig Reucassel had managed to demonstrate the sheer absurdity of such a political strategy, or perhaps he realised with a rye smile that his was the latest "gotcha" in an age that demands honesty from politicians but then hammers them for honest failings of not knowing everything.

Regardless, Craig jogged his way to first place as my #Auspol winner of the week.

Roj Amedi says Voters Who Haven't Given Up

We always talk about how elections are mundane, that the political class cannot communicate with the wider voting population and that apathy is ferociously contagious. Based on that, I think any voters who have managed to hold on, maintain their rage, and haven't been numbed by the slogans—instead choosing to search for constructive policy platforms—are the winners of the week.

Voters are winners when we tolerate our leaders dance around the topic of Indigenous rights without actually listening to First Nation peoples. When Australia taxes our world class health care and puts a levy on pathology and medicare services that affect the poor and people with chronic illnesses. When research into climate change mitigation is slashed and it gets harder and harder for industry to invest in clean energy and extract ourselves from coal power.

When LGBTIQA+ young people are used as political pawns and their wellbeing is compromised to please conservative back benchers. When we're hungry for innovation but only see an increase in defence spending. When universities start to discuss a cap on student places because they are so starved for long term funding. When measured policy developed for education and tax reform are ignored and task forces are used to undermine work, health, and education. When the media and advocacy groups are prevented from speaking for those who are oppressed, isolated, or disenfranchised. When people seeking safety on our shores and borders—who have often run away from conflict that we were involved in—are tortured, raped, violated and forced into a state of limbo are used as bipartisan symbols of fear.


When all seems lost and overwhelming—those voters who keep on talking, sharing, connecting, and hoping. I see you and I thank you. You will not only be rewarded with the sausage sizzle of your dreams but also my utmost respect.

Nevena Spirovska Says the Sex Party (Naturally)

The Sex Party proved that they're truly a liberal party by releasing their "Jobs & Growth" policy: legalising cannabis.

Leader of the Party and member of Victorian Parliament, Fiona Patten, has acknowledged her personal cannabis use during the 2016 Federal Election campaign and during the 2014 Victorian Election.

"In fact, I have enjoyed the many blessings that cannabis can bestow for a lot of my adult life and have not lost my mind or become a serial killer," Patten said.

Catch Roj, Alan, and Nevena on VICE's new weekly political podcast. Listen on Soundcloud, or subscribe on iTunes.