Mitch Fifield

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Mitch Fifield
Mitch Fifield.jpg
Minister for Communications and Arts
Assumed office
28 August 2018
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byVacant
In office
21 September 2015 – 23 August 2018
Prime MinisterMalcolm Turnbull
Preceded byMalcolm Turnbull &
George Brandis
Succeeded byVacant
Deputy Senate Government Leader
In office
20 December 2017 – 23 August 2018
Prime MinisterMalcolm Turnbull
LeaderMathias Cormann
Preceded byMathias Cormann
Succeeded byMarise Payne
Manager of Government Business in the Senate
Assistant Minister for Social Services
In office
18 September 2013 – 20 December 2017
Prime MinisterTony Abbott
Malcolm Turnbull
Preceded byJacinta Collins
Succeeded bySimon Birmingham
Senator for Victoria
Assumed office
31 March 2004
Preceded byRichard Alston
Personal details
Born
Mitchell Peter Fifield

(1967-01-16) 16 January 1967 (age 52)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
NationalityAustralian
Political partyLiberal
Domestic partnerMari Dunic
Children2
ProfessionPolicy advisor
Websitewww.mitchfifield.com

Mitchell Peter Fifield (born 16 January 1967) is an Australian politician. He is a member of the Australian Senate, in which capacity he has represented the state of Victoria for the Liberal Party since March 2004. Fifield served as the Assistant Minister for Social Services and the Manager of Government Business in the Senate in the Abbott Government,[1][2] and Minister for Communications and Minister for the Arts in the Turnbull Government from 21 September 2015 until 23 August 2018. He resigned from the ministry following his criticism of the leadership of Malcolm Turnbull. He was reappointed to the same portfolio by Turnbull's successor, Scott Morrison.

Early life and education[edit]

Fifield was born in Sydney, New South Wales, the son of two bank employees,[3] and was educated at Barker College and the University of Sydney, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts.[4] Between 1985 and 1987, Fifield served for three years in the Australian Army Reserve Psychology Corps.[4]

Between 1988 and 1992, Fifield was a Senior Research Officer for the NSW Minister for Transport and Sydney's Olympic Bid, Bruce Baird; a Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Industrial Relations' Policy Adviser, National's MP John Anderson during 1992; a Senior Policy Adviser to the Victorian Minister for Transport, Alan Brown from 1992 to 1996; and Senior Political Adviser to the Federal Treasurer, Peter Costello, from 1996 to 2003.[4]

Since 1996, Fifield held a number of Liberal Party positions, including being a delegate to the Liberal Party Victorian State Council, since 1996; a delegate to the Liberal Party Policy Assembly, in 1996 and since 2004; a delegate to the Liberal Party Goldstein Electorate Council, between 1995 and 2003.

Parliamentary career[edit]

On 31 March 2004, Fifield was appointed by the Parliament of Victoria under section 15 of the Australian Constitution to fill the casual vacancy in the Australian Senate caused by the resignation in February 2004 of Richard Alston. Fifield was re-elected at the 2007 federal election.[4] After the 2010 election, Fifield was appointed the Shadow Minister for Disabilities, Carers and the Voluntary Sector and Manager of Opposition Business in the Senate.[5]

Throughout his political career, Fifield has been an advocate of voluntary student unionism, as well as allowing women to serve on the front lines of the Australian Defence Force.[6] Along with Andrew Robb, he is the co-publisher of The Party Room, a journal designed to promote new policy discussion within the Federal Coalition.[6][7] Fifield has opposed federal money being spent on cycling infrastructure, and objected to part of the Rudd Government's $42 billion stimulus package being used for new cycleways and home insulation: "I don't think Bradford batts and bike paths is serious economic infrastructure. Call me crazy, but I don't think it is."[8]

Following the 2013 federal election Fifield was appointed to the Abbott Ministry as the Assistant Minister for Social Services and the Manager of Government Business in the Senate.[2]

Fifield replaced the 29th Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, as Minister for Communications, in September, 2015. He is currently deeply embroiled in a major Australian political controversy concerning his knowledge of police raids on his Opposition counterpart, Senator Stephen Conroy in the course of an election campaign, over leaks about alleged failures of the current Australian Prime Minister with respect to shortcomings of Australian internet infrastructure when Malcolm Turnbull was Minister for the same portfolio.[9]

Fifield offered his resignation from the frontbench on 22 August 2018, during the events of the Liberal Party of Australia leadership spill.[10] On 28 August he was reappointed to the same portfolio by Turnbull's successor, Scott Morrison.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Tony Abbott's cabinet and outer ministry". The Sydney Morning Herald. AAP. 16 September 2013. Retrieved 16 September 2013.
  2. ^ a b "Abbott Ministry" (PDF). Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Commonwealth of Australia. 18 September 2013. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 September 2013. Retrieved 22 September 2013.
  3. ^ "First Speech – Mitch Fifield, Senator for Victoria". Australian Senate Hansard. Parliament of Australia. 12 May 2004. Archived from the original on 14 October 2010. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
  4. ^ a b c d "Biography for Mitchell (Mitch) Peter Fifield". Members and Senators. Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
  5. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 17 September 2010. Retrieved 2011-05-20.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ a b Coorey, Phillip (2 October 2006). "MP fights to let women in close combat". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
  7. ^ Robb, Andrew; Fifield, Mitch (June 2010). "Issue 8, Winter 2010" (PDF). The Party Room. Andrew Robb and Mitch Fifield. Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 August 2010. Retrieved 14 October 2010.
  8. ^ "Friday Forum with Mitch Fifield and Mark Arbib". Lateline: ABC TV. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 13 February 2009. Retrieved 16 February 2009.
  9. ^ http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-05-21/shorten-questions-whether-fifield-told-pm-of-nbn-leak-probe/7434432
  10. ^ Sweeney, Lucy; Belot, Henry (23 August 2018). "Malcolm Turnbull faces fresh leadership challenge from Peter Dutton". ABC News (Australia).

External links[edit]

Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Richard Alston
Senator for Victoria
2004–present
Incumbent
Political offices
New ministry Assistant Minister for Social Services
2013–2015
Ministry abolished
Preceded by
George Brandis
Minister for the Arts
2015–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Malcolm Turnbull
Minister for Communications
2015–present