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  1. Hairyback

    36,024 Posts.

    For those with Short memories.

    MALCOLM Turnbull wanted to become Kim Beazley's shadow finance minister during the second term of the Howard Government.
    The Sunday Telegraph has confirmed Mr Turnbull approached at least six senior ALP figures, including former Prime Minister Bob Hawke, actively seeking their endorsement to join the ALP at the time of the republic referendum.
    Speaking for the first time on the issue, Mr Hawke said Mr Turnbull approached him on November 6, 1999, at Sydney's Marriott Hotel following the referendum's defeat.
    Mr Hawke said yesterday he remembered the conversation clearly. Mr Turnbull told him: "Bob, the only thing I can do now is join the Labor Party.''
    Mr Hawke said he replied by telling Mr Turnbull ``he could be accommodated'' and that "the Labor Party was a broad church''.
    The former senior ALP staffer David Britton, who founded the Labor lobbying firm HawkerBritton, said Mr Turnbull told him at the time of the referendum he was "deeply p..... off with Howard'' - and that he had a "very different social agenda'' to the then prime minister.
    Mr Turnbull told Mr Britton: "Don't you think Kim Beazley would like somebody like me as his finance spokesman?''
    The Sunday Telegraph has confirmed that NSW Health Minister, John Della Bosca, was also approached by Mr Turnbull earlier that year about the possibility of securing an ALP NSW Senate seat.
    At the time, Mr Della Bosca was the state secretary of the NSW Labor Party.
    Senior Labor figures said Mr Turnbull raised his interest in becoming a Labor MP with the then ACTU secretary Bill Kelty as well.
    Contacted yesterday, Mr Kelty declined to comment saying he never revealed the nature of private conversations.
    While there have been previous rumblings - which have always denied by Mr Turnbull - about him wanting to the join the Labor Party, today's revelations make it clear that his pursuit of a Labor seat was concerted and he made approaches to influential Labor figures across the party.


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