1958 proudly proclaimed that one of the distinctions between it and the Labor Party was that the primary obligation of a member of parliament was to the electorate, and that to cross the floor, unlike the tightly caucused Labor Party, was permitted on conscience issues.
The Liberal Party is in coalition with the Nationals. If it wins the election it will be in the same coalition. Can it be trusted to do any more on climate change than prevaricate, obfuscate and avoid meaningful action, as it has done for years? If it requires the support of the centrist independents to govern it will have to change. It will have to take climate change seriously, it will have to honour its discarded commitment to have a corruption commission with teeth, it will have to restore accountability because it will be demanded as the price of being in government. It will have to be in a new parliamentary arrangement with people who are not forced into policy positions against the national interest by the most reactionary elements of the Liberal and National Parties.