The most powerful woman in Australia says ministers “maybe don’t deserve their jobs” 120



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Just a week ago, Peta Credlin was possibly the most powerful woman in politics, however that came to an end when her boss, the Prime Minister lost his job.

The Australian Women’s Weekly, however, has decided to press ahead with its leading feature, in which the former Chief of Staff was voted number one in the magazine’s annual Power List.

The Weekly’s annual Power List, which ranks the country’s top 50 most powerful women, was decided by a judging panel including Lucy Turnbull, Sue Cato, The Australian’s Clive Mathieson, Crown Limited’s Ann Peacock, Kate Torney, Angelos Frangopoulous and Alex Malley, in association with CPA Australia.

Last night, Ms Credlin spoke at the The Weekly’s Women of the Future awards and wasted no time telling cabinet ministers what she thought of them and what she thought of the criticism against her during her role under Tony Abbott.

“I refuse to be defined by insider gossip from unnamed sources when no one has the guts to put their name to it,” said Ms Credlin.

“And if you’re a cabinet minister, or a journalist, and you’re intimidated by the Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister, then maybe you don’t deserve your job.

“If I was a guy, I wouldn’t be bossy, I would be strong. If I was a guy, I wouldn’t be a micromanager, I’d be across my brief. If I wasn’t strong, determined, controlling, and got them into government from opposition, might I add, then I would be weak and not up to it and should have to go and could be replaced.

“You will want to have people like me in politics. You will want to have women like me sitting in seats of authority, whether it’s in departments, or it’s writing policy documents, or it’s in the media.

“You want women in places where they can make a difference. Half the policy in this country is for us, but only about a tenth of it is by us. And if we do not stand up and put women in the epicentre of decision making, whether its boardrooms, government boards, politics – if you don’t have women there, we will not exist.”

There had been rumours Ms Credlin would appear on the cover of the magazine, but the October issue will be released with a different cover.

She told attendees at the Weekly event that she would not be pursuing a career in politics and was looking forward to some quiet time.

Ms Credlin has faced a wave of attacks in the past week over her handling of the Prime Minister’s affairs.

Former Liberal Party treasurer Michael Yabsley told Four Corners that Ms Credlin had become the “de facto chief” who had done damage to a “raft of relationships” that Mr Abbott needed.

Former Liberal senator Amanda Vanstone said: “People felt she was more of a doorway blocking off access to the prime minister rather than a bridge”.

What do you think of Peta Credlin’s statements about women in politics? Do you think 

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  1. I saw a brief glimpse of her this morning. She is very impressive. I would like to have seen the whole interview.

  2. It doesn’t matter how strong controlling and bossy you are if you back the wrong horse. Good judgement counts more than any of the above.

  3. She would have had a hell of a job getting Abbot elected and it is amazing he even hold on to his position for 2 years…. But remember, it is always a women ‘s fault, from the original sin to the stabbing of Kevin.

    4 REPLY
    • Abbott didn’t blame her and stuck by her when Turnbull and friends tried to get rid of her. In the interview I saw Peta said along the lines that she got the job because she worked bloody hard for it. You might not like Abbott but some people say he was against woman and yet he stood by Peta. Never ran Julia Bishop down. Stood by the other Julia in the hope she would resign her speakers position herself.

    • You don’t think Abbott was a bit smitten with her, do you? I have wondered this on occasions. She even looks a bit like Monica Lewinsky, Bill Clinton’s downfall.

    • Julie Davies I don’t think so Julie. I think it was a case of birds of a feather. Recognizing that stand over merchants and their bullying tactics were successful.

  4. I would like to see the power of a government come from those elected individuals the people vote for. Those around them should offer advice and assistance, but it seemed she saw herself as the power. Former Chief of Staffs have been virtually unknown to the public. Is it because she is a woman the media focused on her more, it certainly seems to scrutinise and condemn women of influence more than their male counterparts.

  5. I watch part of that interview and the thing that struck me was that Peta seems to have forgotten , that every one of those MP’S was elected to do the job by the Australian Public, she was not elected by anyone

    6 REPLY
    • Yes I didn’t realise till I saw it on News Breakfast that Julie Bishop came second, it demonstrates just how wrong the balance was.

    • She annoyed all of of those MP’S right down the to bottom of the list Barbara, and you know I don’t vote Liberal, they have electorates to answer to, she only had her boss Tony Abbott and he let her have free reign. It seems to me she went power mad and that helped get Abbott elected but it also helped unseat him

    • Must have left a sour taste in their mouths, they went to the trouble and expense of electorate campaigns, as well as a lot of arse licking to get their jobs and she was hired by Abbott had power over the lot of them

    • Abbott made bad choices, look at how he stuck by Bronwyn Bishop, for 18 days he defended her agains the Australian Public and look what she did !! At the first chance she voted him out because she blamed him for losing her job!! Bishop was another Captains call

    • Libbi,
      She proved herself a good puppeteer.

  6. I think the number one thing that got Abbott elected was the Labor Party.

    1 REPLY
    • Absolutely. The LNP didn’t win – Labor lost and not because of the majority of their representatives but because of the most prominent much publicized few.

  7. I listened to Alan Jones last night raving on about how good looking Peta is and I wondered what the motivation was for giving her the job ? brains or looks 🙂 Either way she was another Captain’s pick

    4 REPLY
    • She managed to get Tony Abbott almost over the line in 2010, and over the line in 2013, before that did the same with 2 other Ministers .SO was a Captains pick for her record , Her record has been impressive AND I don’t always believe all I read. that goes on in Parliament ,

    • She is just a staffer Dawn Bruce , if Abbott could not have made PM without her, he no business being PM at all, perhaps it was her who told Abbott to lie and break promise

    • So Alan jones still trying to find a cause for him self to exploit for his ratings after having a few losses in Queensland, he’s just a blow in, makes a
      Lot of noise then blows out again after creating havoc

  8. She was a lousy COS, after all she made her boss the most hated man in Australia and helped lose him his job. Good riddance to a really horrible woman.

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