Election: The Issue No-One Raised
Neither Bill Shorten nor Malcolm Turnbull gave the NBN or the general connection of Australia to the digital world a mention in their Saturday night election speeches following the count which saw Labor finish much closer to government than most people had expected – and final election of a government postponed.
But whoever eventually takes office – probably having to deal with a ragbag collection of independents and small parties, including those of Pauline Hanson and Nick Xenophon, to get any legislation through – will doubtless soon find themselves facing some interesting, to say the least, rollout demands.
Not just from Queensland and SA: Tasmania presumably will be arguing heftily for a more comprehensive deal on fibre rollouts, after its Labor candidates defeated their conservative rivals. Price of cooperation? Perhaps a new Bass Strait cable, following the woeful six-month debacle of the faulty BassLink submarine link.
Plainly the NBN plan will come under increasing pressure. If Shorten gets the nod to move into the Lodge, FttP will presumably be very much back on the rollout list. And even if Turnbull retains residence, he will also come under pressure to up the fibre ante.