11.20pm BST

It is time to play ‘guess who said this’

There is an incredible amount of frustration out there because there is no consistency, no compassion and no common sense in Annastacia Palaszczuk.

The goalposts keep shifting, she keeps moving when the borders will open.

I think all of this is being done for politics, and on the eve of an election, and that’s why people are upset.

If you are sitting in traffic this morning waiting to get across the border to see a medical specialist or a loved one and you are coming from an area where there has not been a single case, you can understandably be angry about it and that’s why the Premier is being called out.

Did you guess?

Did you get it?

(It was Peter Dutton. )

11.03pm BST

Rex Patrick thinks we should all know what is happening in national cabinet. The national cabinet has since taken over from the Council of Australian Governments meeting – leaders could discuss Coag, and what happened in the room – national cabinet though, is under cabinet rules – it’s a secret. And so are the reports and documents it sees, if they are labelled ‘cabinet-in-confidence’. Patrick, doesn’t agree that should be the case.

Rex Patrick

This complex but important #transparency matter will now be dealt with in a timely fashion and be heard by a Presidential Member of the Tribunal, likely a Federal Court Justice, but possibly three. See you at the Tribunal #scottyfromarketing. Game on! #auspol #FOI #RightToKnow pic.twitter.com/77FNg7UGjL

October 1, 2020

10.49pm BST

Queensland police are warning of delays at the Queensland border ahead of the long weekend.

Queensland opened its border to northern NSW residents yesterday, and there have been queues on and off since. The last time Queensland opened its border, I crossed into home about three hours after (about 3am) to avoid those lines (a 14-hour straight drive is nothing to a Queensland gal used to distances) but the lure of a long weekend in the Queensland sun is strong.

Be patient.

at 11.02pm BST

10.37pm BST

Peter Dutton managed to find a way to blame Labor for the federal government’s Covid response in aged care while speaking to the Nine Network this morning.

The home affairs minister, Peter Dutton. Photograph: Lukas Coch/AAP

Asked if the government was sorry, he said:

Everyone is sorry for the situation in aged care and it has been that way for a long time, and in fact it was one of the first acts that Scott Morrison did when he came into the leadership of the government, he called for this royal commission because nobody was happy with the Band-aids that had been applied for well over a decade or two. And the six recommendations have been recommended to the government and we will be implementing those, but there is a lot more work to be done and you will see that. In next year’s budget there is a big change coming in aged care.

The Coalition has been in power for almost seven years of that “decade”. It was in power for almost 14 years of the last “decade or two” he mentions.

The interviewer somehow forgets that “successive governments” were mostly Coalition governments (I know we have had a lot of prime ministers in the past two decades, but we still have a two-party system, and one of them has been in power for a lot longer in recent history) and asks Labor’s Richard Marles if more is needed to be done.

The deputy Labor leader Richard Marles. Photograph: Lukas Coch/AAP


More needs to be done but the starting point is for the commonwealth to take responsibility. Even as you listen to Peter today, everyone has to say sorry, not just the commonwealth, but the commonwealth is actually the body or the tier of government which is responsible for this. This is a real indictment on them. The word that’s used is deplorable.


Richard, you were in government. You did nothing about it.

Fact check: it is true that Labor did nothing about the Covid pandemic or its impact on the most vulnerable of our society when it was in government. But – and hear me out here – I am going to put that down to the fact that Labor hasn’t been in government since 2013 and Covid hit the world in 2019.

at 11.09pm BST

10.28pm BST

Talks between the maritime union and Patrick Terminals will continue this morning after the two parties failed to agree to a new pay deal at Sydney’s Port Botany during negotiations at the Fair Work Commission yesterday.

After nine hours of behind closed doors negotiations on Wednesday, Paul Garrett, the union’s assistant secretary, said despite “somewhat fruitful” talks the parties had yet to strike a deal.

It comes after the union went into the negotiations offering a peace deal that would see the company’s existing workplace agreement extended for 12 months – maintaining existing terms and conditions – while providing a “reasonable” 2.5% pay rise.

Speaking briefly outside the Sydney Fair Work Commission on Wednesday night, Garrett said the union had taken a “sensible position” and had not asked for any additional conditions to the agreement.

The MUA has been accused of crippling operations at Patrick’s Port Botany facilities and risking nationwide medical shortages because of the action it has undertaken during the past month, including a “work to rule” policy that excludes overtime.

But Garrett called that “fake news”, and said comments by the prime minister, Scott Morrison, accusing the union of being “extortionate” were “ill-informed”.

at 11.13pm BST

10.28pm BST

Good morning

Congratulations! You’ve made it to another Friday.

We are going to be living with Covid for quite some time – certainly beyond 31 December – but there is some lightness with the knowledge there is only three months left of this decade.

And there are just hours left in this week. Next week it will be all budget, then response to the budget, then the budget fall-out.

But for now we must be content with the drips and drabs the government lets out. This morning it’s deregulation.

Which also means new tax breaks.

As Katharine Murphy reports:

And of course, there is the possibility of travel outside of our shores (not all of us have official government business with the Vatican after all) with the New Zealand-Australia travel bubble being decided.

Photograph: Kamil Krzaczyński/Reuters

Although it may be a little bit longer before Australians can head to Aotearoa – it looks like New Zealanders will be travelling here before we can travel there. The hotspot definition is yet to be locked in, but we should know in the next couple of days what the progress has been.

Peter Dutton spoke about it with the Nine Network this morning:

We have looked at green lane arrangements where inbound tourists from New Zealand could be segregated from people coming off a flight from the US, for example, so that those people may not have to go into quarantine.

So we think in a country like New Zealand, where they have got comparable infection rates – so that is very low – and particularly given the special relationship with New Zealand there is the ability for that market to open up and the PM will have more to say about that. It would be a big win for tourism operators right across the country, big win for the economy and for jobs at a time when we really need them.

But the most important news today, as it has been since the beginning of the pandemic, is the lives impacted by the virus.

Late yesterday the aged care royal commission released its report into the Covid response. It found the federal government’s preparations had been “insufficient”, as Daniel Hurst reports:

We’ll bring you more of that and everything else today as it happens. You have a three-coffee Amy Remeikis at the helm, with the entire Guardian brains trust at your disposal.

Let’s get into it.

at 11.21pm BST

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