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Australia: PM picks new minister, Albanese annoyed

How Anthony Albanese led Labor from ashes of its disastrous 2019 loss

  How Anthony Albanese led Labor from ashes of its disastrous 2019 loss Anthony Albanese could become the fourth person to lead Labor to an election victory since World War II. Mr Albanese said his government has a 'first-term plan' and has promised policy changes.The 59-year-old NSW MP took over the reins of the party unopposed after Bill Shorten's 2019 election loss.

Scott Morrison has brought health centre-stage of his election campaign, with the prime minister announcing a replacement for the retiring Greg Hunt along with funding to help Australians with type one diabetes.

Anne Ruston (r) will take over the health portfolio from the retiring Greg Hunt. © Mick Tsikas/AAP PHOTOS Anne Ruston (r) will take over the health portfolio from the retiring Greg Hunt.

But Labor leader Anthony Albanese made only a brief appearance in front of the media, in what he said was supposed be a non-campaigning day because of Easter Sunday.

As widely tipped, Social Services Minister Anne Ruston will become the next health minister should the coalition be successful at the May 21 election.

Anthony Albanese says Australians deserves better than Scott Morrison

  Anthony Albanese says Australians deserves better than Scott Morrison Opposition leader Anthony Albanese has vowed to never 'go missing' if he is elected Prime Minister in a sly dig at Scott Morrison for taking a holiday in Hawaii during the 2019-2020 bushfires.Mr Albanese took the opportunity to slam the prime minister during his pitch to replace him in the country's top job in Canberra on Sunday.

Mr Albanese pounced on the announcement after attending a church service in Cairns with shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers.

"She has made it very clear that, if we have an election of the Morrison government, we will see more cuts to Medicare, more cuts to Medicare over the next three years," Mr Albanese told reporters.

But Senator Ruston denied those claims.

"Our government has been clear that we are not cutting Medicare," she told reporters.

The government also promised $270 million to make the treatment of type one diabetes more affordable.

"It means that for 130,000 patients around the country, they'll have access to continuous glucose monitoring and that will be subsidised with savings of up to $5000 a year from July 1," Mr Hunt told the Seven Network.

Scott Morrison pulls ahead of Anthony Albanese in latest poll

  Scott Morrison pulls ahead of Anthony Albanese in latest poll The latest Newspoll showed Opposition leader Anthony Albanese fell three points to 39 per cent while prime minister Scott Morrison Morrison rose a point to 44 per cent. The prime minister's favouritism may have put him in the lead but Mr Morrison still faces one major obstacle with his party trailing behind the preferred Labor party. Labor remains in poll position despite a further fall in popular support with its primary vote dropping to 37 per cent on top of a three-point fall last week. The coalition's primary vote remains unchanged on a low 36 per cent.

Mr Morrison told reporters outside the Westmead Children's Hospital in Sydney such funding is only available because his government is running a strong economy.

"If you can't manage money, and if you can't manage a strong economy, then you cannot deliver the health services that Australians rely on," he said.


Video: Labor Leader Albanese says major policy is fully costed (ABC NEWS)

Meanwhile, Labor continued to defend its announcement to establish 50 urgent care clinics, a policy the Australian Medical Association has called barely coherent.

"It will be very clear that Australian GPs will want to work in this type of practice," Labor's health spokesman Mark Butler told ABC's Insiders program.

"I've been inundated by general practice organisations calling our office, emailing us in the last several days, saying they want to be part of this."

John Howard defends Anthony Albanese after press conference blunder

  John Howard defends Anthony Albanese after press conference blunder Labor leader Anthony Albanese struggled to answer what Australia's national employment or cash rate was during a disastrous press conference on the first full day of his campaign.Mr Albanese was asked the seemingly straightforward questions during press conferences held on the first full day of the election campaign on Monday.

The government continued to be dogged by questions over Liberal candidate for Warringah Katherine Deves and her past anti-transgender comments.

NSW senator and federal Foreign Minister Marise Payne was repeatedly quizzed on Insiders over whether Ms Deves should stand down after NSW Treasurer Matt Kean said there was no place for her "vile bigotry".

"I don't share Ms Deves' comments that she has made, but importantly she has apologised and withdrawn those views," Senator Payne said.

Asked if she should be dropped as the Liberal candidate, Senator Payne said: "Ms Deves is the Liberal candidate and that is the approach we are taking."

On Saturday, Mr Morrison tried to steer the conversation towards industrial relations, promising to reintroduce parts of the scrapped IR bill to parliament if re-elected after failing to secure sufficient votes the first time around.

Provisions to criminalise wage theft and changes to enterprise bargaining were scrapped, as were award simplification and the ability to lock work sites into eight-year pay agreements for major projects.

Liberal frontbencher Jane Hume said there a large amount of consultation went into those proposed reforms.

"Anthony Albanese and Labor have now come forward with their industrial relations policies which will potentially cost employers billions of dollars," she told Sky News' Sunday Agenda program.

But Deputy Opposition Leader Richard Marles said Labor was not going to do anything without full consultation with the business community.

"We do need to understand that we are living in an economy where  employment has never been more insecure and more precarious," he told Sky News.

"We have half a million Australians who are having to work three jobs to make ends meet."

Anthony Albanese rambles about his old job making pancakes for 2 mins .
The Labor leader was asked in a press conference in the NSW Hunter Valley on Thursday morning to nominate the hardest day of work he has ever done. He replied with a long-winded answer about nights working at Sydney restaurant Pancakes on the Rocks and also a casual job cleaning pigeon poo off walls with a pressure hose.

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