Ted Baillieu

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The Honourable
Ted Baillieu
MLA
Ted baillieu.jpg
46th Premier of Victoria
Elections: 2006, 2010
In office
2 December 2010 – 6 March 2013
Monarch Elizabeth II
Governor David de Kretser
Alex Chernov
Deputy Peter Ryan
Preceded by John Brumby
Succeeded by Denis Napthine
Leader of the Opposition of Victoria
Elections: 2006, 2010
In office
8 May 2006 – 2 December 2010
Deputy Louise Asher
Preceded by Robert Doyle
Member of the Victorian Parliament
for Hawthorn
Incumbent
Assumed office
18 September 1999
Preceded by Phil Gude
Personal details
Born Edward Norman Baillieu
(1953-07-31) 31 July 1953 (age 61)
Melbourne, Victoria
Political party Liberal Party
Spouse(s) Robyn Jubb
Children Eleanor, Martha and Robert
Alma mater University of Melbourne
Profession Architect
Website Premier of Victoria
Parliament website

Edward "Ted" Norman Baillieu, MLA (born 31 July 1953) is an Australian politician who was Premier of Victoria from 2010 to 2013. He has been a Liberal Party of Australia member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly since 1999, representing the electorate of Hawthorn. He was elected leader of the Liberal Party in opposition in 2006, and served as Premier from 2010 until 2013 after winning the 2010 state election. He resigned as Premier on 6 March 2013, and was succeeded by Denis Napthine.

Early life[edit]

Ted Baillieu is the youngest son of Darren and Diana Baillieu. He is also the younger brother of solicitor Ian Baillieu, former ABC presenter Fiona Baillieu, author David Baillieu, former journalist and Portsea activist Kate Baillieu (the widow of state Liberal politician Julian Doyle) and Olympic oarsman and America's Cup yachtsman Will Baillieu.[1] His Walloon great-great-great-grandfather, Étienne Lambert Baillieux (1773–1816), migrated to England from Liège, Belgium.[2] The 3rd Baron Baillieu, James William Latham Baillieu (b. 1950) is his third cousin.[2] He is also the great-grandson of Victorian politician William Knox.[2] He was raised in the Melbourne suburb of Toorak and educated at the Melbourne Grammar School and the University of Melbourne, where he graduated in 1976 with a Bachelor of Architecture degree.

Professional career[edit]

He worked as an architect and for a time joined the family real estate firm Baillieu Knight Frank.[3][4] The Labor Party ran an election advertisement campaign in 2006 and 2010 claiming he profited from Liberal government policies. Baillieu was also employed by Tourism Victoria from 1998 to 1999, before entering politics.[5]

Political career[edit]

He joined the Carlton branch of the Liberal Party in 1981 because of his frustration at the power of unions on building sites. By 1987 he was Vice-President of the Victorian Liberal Party and President in 1994. At Jeff Kennett's insistence, Baillieu nominated for Liberal Party preselection for the safe seat of Hawthorn at the 1999 election, to replace the retiring member Phil Gude.[4] Baillieu was preselected, and won the seat at the election. It was at this election that Steve Bracks unexpectedly led the Australian Labor Party to victory, with the support of three country independents, one a former Labor supporter and the other two conservatives.

Baillieu immediately joined the Liberal frontbench, serving as Shadow Minister for Tertiary Education and Training (1999–2001), Gaming (July 2000–August 2002) and Planning (September 2001–May 2006).

Liberal Party leadership[edit]

He was elected unopposed as leader of the Liberal Party and Leader of the Opposition on 8 May 2006 by the Liberal Party room, replacing Robert Doyle, who had resigned his position on 4 May 2006.

After Doyle's resignation, speculation mounted that former Victorian Premier Jeff Kennett would return to politics and the position of Liberal Party Leader in order to lead the party into the 2006 state election set down for 25 November 2006. However on the morning of 5 May 2006, Baillieu in announcing his candidacy for the party leadership revealed that Kennett would not return to the leadership and throw his support behind Baillieu.[6] Later that afternoon, Baillieu's only other rival for the position, Shadow Minister for Transport Terry Mulder, also withdrew from the race.

Six months after assuming leadership of the Liberals, Baillieu led the campaign in the 2006 election. The Labor party, keen to exploit Baillieu's wealth, dubbed him, Ted the Toff from Toorak.[7]

Throughout the campaign, media stories about Baillieu's extensive blue chip share portfolio, at the time estimated to be worth almost $4 million, raised questions about conflicts of interest.[8] Baillieu's handling of the issue and his refusal to place his investments in a blind trust was thought to have hurt the Liberal Party during the campaign.[9] At the 25 November 2006 election, the Liberal Party gained an extra 6 of the 88 lower house seats, but not enough to win government.

In a speech at the State Council of the Victorian Liberal Party, Ted Ballieu opposed the push by John Howard for nuclear reactors in Victoria.[10]

An online campaign against Baillieu by senior Liberal Party members was uncovered and made public, with Baillieu promising to root out the disloyal elements in his party. The media suspected that forces loyal to former Federal Treasurer Peter Costello and former State Party President Michael Kroger had attempted to undermine Baillieu.[11]

In February 2008, at a joint news conference it was announced that the Victorian Nationals and Liberals would join in a new Coalition agreement forged between Baillieu and Peter Ryan. As part of the arrangement, the parties agreed to hold joint party meetings, develop joint policies, allocate five shadow cabinet positions to the Nationals, abolish three-cornered contests (unless otherwise agreed) and run joint Legislative Council tickets in the non-metropolitan Regions.[12] In 2008, he declared his support for abortion law reform in Victoria otherwise expanding the laws of when a woman could decide to have an abortion.[13]

Premier of Victoria[edit]

Baillieu, as Leader of the Opposition, contested the 2010 Victorian state election as the alternative Premier of Victoria with the Leader of the Nationals, Peter Ryan, as the alternative Deputy Premier. Baillieu focused during the election campaign mainly on the policies of health, law and order, government expenditure and the longevity and the ability of the incumbent Labor government to deliver during a record Labor fourth term. Until election eve, polling indicated a tight Labor government re-election. The final Newspoll saw a two party preferred figure of 48.9 percent for Labor and 51.1 percent to the Liberals and Nationals.

Two days after the election, on 29 November, the Premier of Victoria, John Brumby, conceded defeat after it became clear that his government had lost its majority to the opposition. The Coalition won 45 seats to Labor's 43, with a parliamentary majority of just one seat after the appointment of Ken Smith as Speaker.[14] On 2 December, Baillieu was sworn in as the 46th Premier of Victoria, along with 22 of the Baillieu/Ryan government ministers.

Teachers and students outside Baillieu's offices on 10 May 2012, protesting against cuts to TAFE funding.

After two years in office, Baillieu has been criticized by business and community leaders for acting too slow and failing to present a credible policy agenda. His government has been criticized for its "backward" environmental record for dismantling protection of native species, cutting support for renewable energy and introducing cattle grazing in the Alpine National Park, as well as for cutting funding for TAFE vocational education.[15]

On 4 March 2013, the Herald Sun released secret recordings which revealed Baillieu's chief of staff, Tony Nutt, had offered to help former Ryan police adviser Tristan Weston find a new job. Weston had been fired after an OPI report found he had undermined Victoria Police chief Simon Overland. The tapes also revealed Nutt had claimed the Baillieu government had hamstrung the operations of a new anti-corruption commission. More tapes were released the next day, in which deputy police chief Sir Ken Jones expressed concerns about Overland and promised to discuss them with Ryan. On 7 March, Liberal MLA Geoff Shaw resigned from the parliamentary Liberal Party and refused to commit to supporting the Government if Baillieu remained Premier. That afternoon, Ryan insisted that Baillieu would not resign. However, after a crisis meeting of Liberal MLAs later that night, Baillieu resigned as Leader of the Liberal Party and hence as Premier of Victoria.[16] For the time being, however, he remains in the legislature as a backbencher.

Covert recording controversy[edit]

In 2014, Baillieu made off-the-record comments "critical of parliamentary colleagues"[17] to Sunday Age state political editor Farrah Tomazin. Tomazin secretly recorded the comments without Baillieu's knowledge or consent. This is illegal in most Australian states, but not in Victoria where the deception occurred.[18] Tomazin subsequently lost her recorder at an ALP state conference.[19] The recorder was found by security staff and handed over to Labor Party officials. The Baillieu recording was distributed from a fake email address in June 2014.[18] Responsibility for this has been disputed and is the subject of a police investigation.[20] The Age's coverage of the episode, some of it entrusted to Tomazin herself,[19][21] focused on the likelihood of Labor involvement in leaking the recording rather than its own employee's duplicity in making it.[18]

Retirement from politics[edit]

On 22 August 2014, Baillieu announced that he will not re-contest his seat of Hawthorn and that he will be retiring from politics at the 2014 Victorian state election.[22]

Personal life[edit]

Ted Baillieu is married to Robyn and has three children: Martha, Eleanor and Robert. He is a supporter of the Geelong Football Club, where he is a joint convener of We Are Geelong Supporters (WAGS).[5] Baillieu is a regular Sunday morning swimmer with the Brighton Icebergs. He regularly enters the Pier to Pub swim organised by the Lorne Surf Life Saving Club. He also plays golf and basketball.[23]

In December 2010, Baillieu underwent surgery at the Epworth Hospital to remove a kidney stone.[24]

He is a member of the Australian Institute of Architects, the Geelong Football Club, the Melbourne Cricket Club, the Melbourne Rugby Union Football Club, the Melbourne Savage Club, the Melbourne Victory FC, the Rotary Club of Glenferrie, the Royal Melbourne Golf Club, the Sorrento Golf Club, the Hawthorn Rowing Club, and Epilepsy Foundation of Victoria (as a member of the Patrons Council).[25]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Endearing matriarch frowned on pomposity - National". Melbourne: theage.com.au. 27 May 2008. Retrieved 2010-12-05. 
  2. ^ a b c http://www.thepeerage.com/p6403.htm#i64028 The Peerage
  3. ^ "Parliament of Victoria - Re-Member". Parliament.vic.gov.au. Retrieved 2010-12-05. 
  4. ^ a b 30 November 2010 (30 November 2010). "Victoria's man of mystery". The Australian. Retrieved 2010-12-05. 
  5. ^ a b http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/members/id/58 | Parliament of Victoria, Ted Baillieu -Member for Hawthorn, Premier of Victoria
  6. ^ Austin and Tomazin, Paul and Farrah (6 May 2006). "Kennett backdown infuriates Howard". Melbourne: The Age. 
  7. ^ "Nobody votes for them, so why do they matter? - VicElection06News". Melbourne: Theage.com.au. 18 November 2006. Retrieved 2010-12-05. 
  8. ^ Ewin Hannan and Lisa Macnamara, "Baillieu under fire on shares", theaustralian.com.au, 6 November 2006.
  9. ^ Michael Bachelard, "Baillieu share silence may be hurting campaign", theage.com.au, 8 November 2006.
  10. ^ Rose, Danny (29 April 2007). "State Libs NIMBY on nuclear power". News.Com.Au. 
  11. ^ Melissa Fyfe and Michael Bachelard, "Crisis deepens for Baillieu", theage.com.au, 25 May 2008.
  12. ^ 2010 Victorian election preview: ABC
  13. ^ Austin, Paul: Baillieu rejects Costello's stance on abortion, The Age, 8 September 2008.
  14. ^ Austin, Paul (16 December 2010). "The figures point to electoral wilderness for Victorian Labor". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 2 September 2011. 
  15. ^ Tomazin, Farrah: "Baillieu challenged to be bold, decisive", in The Age, 25 November 2012
  16. ^ Johnston, Matt (6 March 2013). "Ted Baillieu resigns as Victoria's Premier". Herald Sun. Retrieved 6 March 2013. 
  17. ^ Mark Hawthorne and Richard Willingham, "Baillieu stolen tape exposes ructions," The Age, 24 June 2014. Accessed 5 August 2014.
  18. ^ a b c "The tape, the journo and the politicians," Media Watch, ABC TV, 4 August 2014. Accessed 5 August 2014.
  19. ^ a b Josh Gordon and Farrah Tomazin, "ALP the guilty party," The Age, 24 July 2014. Accessed 24 July 2014.
  20. ^ Richard Willingham, "Police to speak to Daniel Andrews' staff about journalist's lost dictaphone," The Age, 4 August 2004. Accessed 5 August 2014.
  21. ^ Farrah Tomazin, "Returning a dictaphone would have avoided," The Age, 29 July 2014. Accessed 5 August 2014.
  22. ^ http://www.abc.net.au/news/2014-08-22/former-victorian-premier-ted-baillieu-resigns/5689476
  23. ^ Ted Baillieu profile: parliament.curriculum.edu.au
  24. ^ "Baillieu hospitalised with kidney stone," The Courier-Mail, 15 December 2010. Accessed 5 August 2014.
  25. ^ Parliament of Victoria, Ted Baillieu - Member for Hawthorn, Premier of Victoria

External links[edit]

Victorian Legislative Assembly
Preceded by
Phil Gude
Member of the Legislative Assembly
for Hawthorn

1999–present
Incumbent
Party political offices
Preceded by
Robert Doyle
Leader of the Liberal Party in Victoria
2006–2013
Succeeded by
Denis Napthine
Political offices
Preceded by
Robert Doyle
Leader of the Opposition of Victoria
2006–2010
Succeeded by
Daniel Andrews
Preceded by
John Brumby
Premier of Victoria
2010–2013
Succeeded by
Denis Napthine