Mark Dreyfus

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Mark Dreyfus

Mark Dreyfus 2015.jpg
Dreyfus in 2015
Attorney-General of Australia
In office
4 February 2013 – 18 September 2013
Prime MinisterJulia Gillard
Kevin Rudd
Preceded byNicola Roxon
Succeeded byGeorge Brandis
Minister for Emergency Management
In office
4 February 2013 – 18 September 2013
Prime MinisterJulia Gillard
Kevin Rudd
Preceded byNicola Roxon
Succeeded byPosition abolished
Minister for the Public Service and Integrity
In office
1 July 2013 – 18 September 2013
Prime MinisterKevin Rudd
Preceded byGary Gray
Succeeded byEric Abetz
Special Minister of State
In office
1 July 2013 – 18 September 2013
Prime MinisterKevin Rudd
Preceded byGary Gray
Succeeded byMichael Ronaldson
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Isaacs
Assumed office
24 November 2007
Preceded byAnn Corcoran
Personal details
Born
Mark Alfred Dreyfus

(1956-10-03) 3 October 1956 (age 62)
Perth, Western Australia, Australia
Political partyLabor Party
Spouse(s)Deborah Chemke
ChildrenThree
ResidenceMalvern, Victoria, Australia
Alma materUniversity of Melbourne
ProfessionLawyer

Mark Alfred Dreyfus (born 3 October 1956) is an Australian politician who has been a member of the House of Representatives since 2007, representing the Division of Isaacs for the Labor Party. He was Attorney-General of Australia between February and September 2013, in the Gillard and Rudd Governments.

Early life and education[edit]

Dreyfus was born in Perth, Western Australia, the son of George Dreyfus, a noted composer who came to Australia from Nazi Germany. He is of Jewish ancestry.[1][2] Dreyfus was educated at Scotch College, Melbourne and the University of Melbourne, where he resided at Ormond College and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Laws.[3]

Before entering parliament, Dreyfus worked as a barrister for some twenty years, with an extensive practice in commercial, defamation, constitutional and environmental law. In 1999 he was appointed Queen’s Counsel.

Dreyfus also served as a director of the Law Council of Australia and on the Victorian Bar Council and Victorian Bar Ethics Committee.

Since his first professional role as a Field Officer for the Northern Land Council, Dreyfus has worked closely with Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory, including representing a number of the claimants in the landmark Stolen Generations litigation.[4]

Parliamentary career[edit]

Dreyfus in 2005

In March 2006, Dreyfus successfully challenged the sitting Labor member for Isaacs, Ann Corcoran, for the right to contest the 2007 election. At the 2007 election, he defeated the Liberal candidate, Ross Fox, gaining a 5.9 percent swing to Labor.

Following Labor's victory at the 2007 federal election, Dreyfus was appointed the chairman of the House of Representatives Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee. At the 2010 election, Dreyfus was re-elected, gaining a further 3.33 per cent swing to Labor.

In September 2010, Dreyfus was appointed as Cabinet Secretary as well as Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency in the Second Gillard Ministry.[5] Dreyfus took on additional responsibilities in December 2011 when he was appointed as Parliamentary Secretary for Industry and Innovation.

MP expenses scandal[edit]

In October 2013, Dreyfus was drawn into the federal MP expenses scandal[6][7] after admitting that he had claimed entitlements for staying in Canberra while he was in Perisher.[8]

Comments on political opponents[edit]

In March 2011, he described the campaign by Tony Abbott against the carbon price as Goebellian cynicism.[9][10][11]

In August 2011 he was accused of calling Sophie Mirabella a "bitch" in parliament. He denied the accusation although he did withdraw for an unparliamentary remark at the time.[12]

Attorney-General[edit]

On 2 February 2013, Dreyfus was promoted to Attorney-General and as Minister for Emergency Management after the resignation of Nicola Roxon.[13] Dreyfus was given additional responsibilities on 1 July 2013 as Special Minister of State and Minister for the Public Service and Integrity following the decision by Gary Gray to resign from the ministry following the June 2013 Labor leadership spill.[14]

As Attorney-General, Dreyfus appeared before the International Court of Justice in The Hague as Counsel and Advocate for Australia in the case of Whaling in the Antarctic (Australia v Japan; New Zealand intervening) in June and July 2013.[15] On 1 April 2014, the International Court of Justice handed down its decision in favour of Australia that Japan cease whaling in the Southern Ocean.[16]

Personal life[edit]

Dreyfus lives in Malvern with his Chilean-born wife Deborah (née Chemke). The couple have three children, Joe, Tom and Laura.[17][18][19][20]

Dreyfus speaks fluent Spanish[20] and has stated that, had he not become a lawyer, he would have liked to become a park ranger in the Alpine National Park.[21]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ https://www.smh.com.au/politics/federal/jewish-mp-to-put-religion-before-politics-20130130-2dkmr.html
  2. ^ https://www.jewishnews.net.au/elected-record-number-jews/54641
  3. ^ Green, Shane (13 October 2011). "The man in the hot seat". The Age. Melbourne. Retrieved 14 March 2015.
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 6 February 2013. Retrieved 2013-02-03.
  5. ^ "Special Gazette No. S162" (PDF). Commonwealth of Australia. 16 September 2010.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ http://www.crikey.com.au/2013/10/17/expenses-scandal-the-rules-leading-mps-into-temptation/
  7. ^ "Parliamentary expenses scandal puts all MPs on notice". News Corp Australia Network. 11 October 2013.
  8. ^ "Expenses critic Mark Dreyfus embarrassed over taxpayer ski trip to Perisher". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  9. ^ http://au.news.yahoo.com/a/-/full-coverage/8996858/abbotts-tax-strategy-likened-to-nazi-propaganda/. Retrieved 16 March 2011. Missing or empty |title= (help)[dead link]
  10. ^ "Abbott's tax strategy likened to Nazi propaganda like that of Joseph Goebbels". ABC News. 11 March 2011. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  11. ^ http://www.watoday.com.au/opinion/politics/blogs/the-dreyfus-files/shades-of-goebbels-in-truth-campaign/20110311-1bq45.html?comments=56
  12. ^ Packham, Ben (18 August 2011). "Liberals simmer over Sophie Mirabella sledge as PM declines to rebuke Mark Dreyfus". The Australia. News Ltd. Retrieved 20 August 2011.
  13. ^ Maher, Sid (2 February 2013). "Dreyfus, Bowen promoted in Gillard cabinet reshuffle". The Australian. Retrieved 2 February 2013.
  14. ^ "Second Rudd Ministry" (PDF). Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet. Commonwealth of Australia. 1 July 2013. Retrieved 2 July 2013.[permanent dead link]
  15. ^ ICJ Hears Case of Whaling in Antarctic: Australia vs. Japan United Nations Information Centre Canberra
  16. ^ http://thediplomat.com/2014/04/australias-whaling-victory/
  17. ^ "Striking a different role" - Young Lawyers Journal Archived 20 January 2013 at the Wayback Machine.
  18. ^ ParlInfo - GOVERNOR-GENERAL’S SPEECH : Address-in-Reply
  19. ^ J-Wire Staff (3 February 2013). "New Attorney-General to be sworn in tomorrow". JWire. Archived from the original on 6 February 2013.
  20. ^ a b Schubert, Misha (7 February 2006). "QC stands out among Labor candidates for Canberra". Melbourne: The Age.
  21. ^ "Mark Dreyfus - Featurettes - Justinian". Justinian. 17 March 2013.

External links[edit]

Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Ann Corcoran
Member for Isaacs
2007–present
Incumbent
Political offices
Preceded by
Greg Combet
as Minister Assisting the Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency
2010–2013
Succeeded by
Yvette D'Ath
Preceded by
Kate Lundy
as Minister Assisting the Minister for Industry and Innovation
Parliamentary Secretary for Industry and Innovation
2011–2013
Succeeded by
Kate Lundy
as Minister Assisting the Minister for Industry and Innovation
Preceded by
Nicola Roxon
Attorney-General of Australia
2013
Succeeded by
George Brandis
Minister for Emergency Management
2013
Position abolished
Preceded by
Gary Gray
Minister for the Public Service and Integrity
2013
Succeeded by
Eric Abetz
as Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on the Public Service
Special Minister of State
2013
Succeeded by
Michael Ronaldson