|40th Premier of New South Wales |
3 August 2005 –5 September 2008
|Preceded by||Bob Carr|
|Succeeded by||Nathan Rees|
|Constituency|| Hurstville (1991–1999)|
|Born||21 July 1961|
|Political party||Labor Party|
|Education|| Narwee Boys' High School |
University of Sydney
University of Technology, Sydney
|Profession||Union official and adviser|
Morris Iemma ( // ; born 21 July 1961) is a former Australian politician who was the 40th Premier of New South Wales. He served from 3 August 2005 to 5 September 2008. From Sydney, Iemma attended the University of Sydney and the University of Technology, Sydney. A member of the Labor Party, he was first elected to the Parliament of New South Wales at the 1991 state election, having previously worked as a trade union official. From 1999, Iemma was a minister in the third and fourth ministries led by Bob Carr. He replaced Carr as premier and Leader of the New South Wales Labor Party in 2005, following Carr's resignation. Iemma led Labor to victory at the 2007 state election, albeit with a slightly reduced majority. He resigned as premier in 2008, after losing the support of caucus, and left parliament shortly after, triggering a by-election. He was replaced as premier by Nathan Rees.
Iemma was born in Sydney, the only child of Giuseppe and Maria Iemma, migrants from Martone, Calabria, Italy. Maria Iemma worked in the clothing trade, and Giuseppe Iemma, a communistsupporter in Italy, worked as a machine labourer. Morris joined the Labor Party when he was 16. He was educated at state schools in Sydney, including the now-closed Narwee Boys' High School, and has an economics degree from the University of Sydney and a law degree from the University of Technology, Sydney.
In 1997 Iemma married Santina Raiti, with whom he has four young children.
Iemma is a member of the dominant right-wing faction of the New South Wales branch of the Australian Labor Party. From 1984 to 1986 he was an official with the Commonwealth Bank Employees Union. He then worked as an adviser to Senator Graham Richardson who held the environment and social security portfolios in the Bob Hawke and Paul Keating federal governments.
In 1991 Iemma was elected to the New South Wales Legislative Assembly for the seat of Hurstville,defeating a sitting Liberal member, with the slogan "A local who listens". When the seat of Hurstville was abolished in 1999, he won a tough pre-selection battle for the safe seat of Lakemba, which included part of the old seat of Hurstville. Iemma held Lakemba until his resignation in 2008.
Iemma was Minister for Public Works and Services and Minister Assisting the Premier on Citizenship (1999-2003), and as Minister for Sport and Recreation (2001-2003), and was Minister for Health (2003-2005).His tenure as Health Minister was generally free of major controversy, although he has said of the Health portfolio: "it is one of the biggest and most difficult jobs in government".
When Bob Carr announced his intention to retire as New South Wales Premier on 3 August 2005, Iemma immediately announced his candidacy to succeed him as leader of the NSW Labor Party and thus as Premier. Police Minister Carl Scully was also a candidate, but on 29 July he withdrew. Iemma was the only candidate when the Labor Caucus met on 2 August to elect a new leader. He was formally appointed by Professor Marie Bashir, the Governor of New South Wales, on 3 August.
Iemma immediately faced a number of resignations. Deputy Premier and Treasurer Andrew Refshauge, and senior minister Craig Knowles, once considered a potential leader himself, both declared they would leave politics.Iemma took the Treasury portfolio for himself. Among his first policy moves as new Premier, Iemma announced the immediate repealing of the vendor tax (a tax on investment property) that was introduced by the Carr government in 2003.
Opinion polls in August showed that Labor under Iemma's leadership was maintaining the lead over the Liberal opposition it had enjoyed under Carr, despite Iemma's relatively low profile.His short-term position was improved by the sudden resignation of Liberal leader John Brogden. This was seen in the results of the by-elections on 17 September caused by the resignation from Parliament of Carr, Refshauge and Knowles. Labor retained all three seats - Maroubra (Carr's seat) very easily, Macquarie Fields (Knowles's seat) comfortably, despite a substantial swing to the Liberals, and Marrickville (Refshauge's seat) despite a strong challenge from the Greens. In Marrickville, where the Labor candidate was Education Minister Carmel Tebbutt (switching from the Legislative Council), the Labor primary vote increased in the absence of a Liberal Party candidate.
Despite its relatively short term in office, the Iemma Government faced significant service delivery problems in transport, health care and future water supplies. Sydney newspapers consistently asserted that Iemma's government was more interested in "spin" than policy development.Other embarrassments beset his premiership. For example, in February 2006, while awaiting the start of a COAG media conference in Canberra, while chatting to Victorian Premier Steve Bracks and not realising cameras were operating, Iemma was recorded as saying:
Nevertheless, in the months leading up to his first election as Labor leader, he maintained a comfortable lead in various opinion polls and was re-elected in the March 2007 election.Labor was returned with 52 seats compared to 35 for the Coalition.
On 15 July 2007, after several failures on the NSW rail system, Iemma claimed that the government was at war with rail unions.In November 2007 the Iemma government lifted the ban on genetically modified canola production and started the process of privatising the state's electricity system. On 3 May 2008 the New South Wales ALP's State Conference rejected, by 702 to 107 votes, the Iemma government's plans to privatise the state's electricity system.
On 5 September 2008, Iemma announced his resignation as Premier after losing the support of his caucus faction over the details of a proposed cabinet reshuffle sparked by the resignation of Deputy Premier John Watkins. Iemma had proposed that five other Ministers also depart, including Treasurer Michael Costa and Health Minister Reba Meagher. Iemma's faction, Centre Unity, supported the sacking of the Treasurer but not the other four Ministers. Faced with this rejection, Iemma resigned.The caucus unanimously selected Nathan Rees as his Premier in his stead.
Iemma resigned from parliament on 19 September 2008, ending his 17-year political career,and forcing a by-election in the seat of Lakemba, won by Robert Furolo.
In May 2009, Iemma was admitted to hospital suffering from an acute brain inflammation—viral meningitis. As a result, he lost movement in his legs and underwent physiotherapy with the goal of recovering full use of his legs.Iemma has served as chair of the South Eastern Sydney Local Health District Board since 1 January 2011 and on the boards of the Cancer Institute NSW and the Sydney Cricket & Sports Ground Trust.
In January 2013, there was speculation that Iemma was considering standing for the Division of Barton in the Australian House of Representatives for Labor at the 2013 federal election to replace former Attorney-General Robert McClelland who on that day announced that he would be retiring from parliament after 17 years.Iemma, however, decided not to contest the preselection in Barton, and the preselection instead went to Steve McMahon.
In November 2012 and March 2014 Iemma was called before the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) in relation to allegations of corrupt behaviour by Eddie Obeid regarding a dispute between Australian Water Holdings and Sydney Water; and in relation to allegations of corrupt behaviour by Ian Macdonald and Obeid regarding the issuing of lucrative mining licences near Bylong.Both Obeid and Macdonald were found by ICAC to have acted in a corrupt manner regarding the issuing of mining licences and criminal charges were laid.
The Morris Iemma Indoor Sports Centre, named in honour of Iemma and operated by the City of Canterbury in partnership with the YMCA NSW, is a modern sports facility that caters for a variety of indoor sports, including netball, basketball, soccer and volleyball as well as incorporating a gym, change rooms, cafeteria and childcare services. The facility was opened in March 2011.
The Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), an independent agency of the Government of New South Wales, is responsible for eliminating and investigating corrupt activities and enhancing the integrity of the public administration in the state of New South Wales, Australia. The Commission was established in 1989, pursuant to the Independent Commission Against Corruption Act, 1988 (NSW), modeled after the ICAC in Hong Kong.
John Arthur Watkins is a former Deputy Premier of New South Wales, serving between 2005 until his resignation from Parliament in 2008. Watkins has been the Chief Executive Officer of Alzheimer's Australia (NSW) since 2008; the Chairman of Calvary healthcare since 2011; and the eighth Chancellor of the University of New England, serving between 2013 and 2014.
Patrick Carl Scully, is a former Australian politician and minister in the New South Wales Government before his forced resignation on 25 October 2006.
Barry Robert O'Farrell is a former Australian politician who was the 43rd Premier of New South Wales and Minister for Western Sydney from 2011 to 2014. He was the Leader of the New South Wales Liberal Party from 2007 to 2014, and was a Member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly from 1995 to 2015, representing Northcott until 1999 and representing Ku-ring-gai on the Upper North Shore of Sydney from 1999 to 2015. He is currently President and Independent Board Chair of Diabetes Australia, Chair of the Wests Tigers Rugby League Football Club and CEO of Racing Australia Ltd.
Andrew John Refshauge is a former Australian politician who was Deputy Premier of New South Wales from 1995 to 2005, a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly between 1983 and 2005, and a senior minister in the Carr ministry.
Carmel Mary Tebbutt is a former Australian politician. She was the Labor Party Member for the former seat of Marrickville in the New South Wales Legislative Assembly until the 2015 election and was Deputy Premier of New South Wales from 2008 to 2011. She was also Minister for Health in the Keneally Government. She is the first woman to hold the position of Deputy Premier of New South Wales.
George Richard Torbay, an Australian politician, was an independent member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly representing Northern Tablelands from 1999 to 2013. Torbay was the 30th Speaker of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly, serving from 2007 until 2011, and was the first independent member to be Speaker of the House since 1913. Prior to his election to State parliament, he served as Mayor of Armidale City Council from 1995 to 1998.
Joseph Guerino Tripodi, a former Australian politician, was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly representing the electorate of Fairfield for the Labor Party between 1995 and 2011. He was Minister for Finance, Infrastructure, Regulatory Reform, Ports and Waterways under former Premier Nathan Rees. He was a controversial figure during his time in politics, known as a factional boss, within the NSW Labor Right whose Terrigals sub-faction has twice dumped the sitting Labor Premier during 2007 and 2010. On 11 November 2010, he announced his decision to not contest the 2011 state election. Tripodi had his membership of the Labor Party terminated in June 2014 after the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) found that Tripodi acted in corrupt conduct by deliberately failing to disclose to his Cabinet colleagues his awareness of the Obeid family's financial interests in Circular Quay leases. In 2016 ICAC made a second finding of corruption against Tripodi for leaking confidential Treasury information to benefit Nathan Tinkler's business interests, and recommended charges. In 2017 ICAC made a third finding of corruption against Tripodi for using his ministerial position to try to award a government water contract to benefit the Obeid family.
Ian Michael Macdonald, a former Australian politician, was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council from 1988 to 2010 representing the Labor Party. Between 2003 and 2010, Macdonald held a range of ministerial responsibilities in the Carr, Iemma, Rees, and Keneally ministries. Macdonald, who joined the Labor Party in 1972, had his membership of the party terminated in 2013 for bringing the party into disrepute.
Eric Roozendaal, a former Australian politician, was a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council, serving between 2004 and 2013. He is a former General Secretary of the Labor Party. Roozendaal was the Treasurer of New South Wales, Minister of State and Regional Development, Minister of Ports and Waterways, Minister for the Illawarra, and Special Minister of State in the Rees and Keneally governments.
Kristina Kerscher Keneally is an Australian politician who has been a Senator for New South Wales since February 2018, representing the Labor Party. Since 2019, she has served as Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Shadow Minister for Home Affairs, and Shadow Minister for Immigration and Citizenship. She previously served as Premier of New South Wales from 2009 to 2011, the first woman to hold the position.
Edward Moses Obeid is a retired Australian politician, and convicted criminal, who served as a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council between 1991 and 2011, representing the Labor Party. He was the Minister for Fisheries and the Minister for Mineral Resources from 1999–2003. Prior to the March 2015 expiry of his term in the Legislative Council, Obeid announced his decision to retire early on 10 May 2011, citing family reasons.
Noreen Hay is an Australian politician and a former member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly. She represented Wollongong for the Labor Party from 2003 to 2016. In July 2015, Hay stood down as NSW Opposition whip due to allegations of electoral fraud and branch stacking.
Nathan Rees is a former Australian politician who served as the 41st Premier of New South Wales and parliamentary leader of the New South Wales division of the Labor Party from September 2008 to December 2009. Rees was a Member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly representing Toongabbie for Labor from 2007 to 2015.
Robert Anthony Furolo is an Australian politician. He was a Labor Party member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly from 2008 to 2015, representing the electorate of Lakemba.
Elections to the 55th Parliament of New South Wales were held on Saturday, 26 March 2011. The 16-year-incumbent Labor Party government led by Premier Kristina Keneally was defeated in a landslide by the Liberal–National Coalition opposition led by Barry O'Farrell. Labor suffered a two-party swing of 16.4 points, the largest against a sitting government at any level in Australia since World War II. From 48 seats at dissolution, Labor was knocked down to 20 seats—the worst defeat of a sitting government in New South Wales history, and one of the worst of a state government in Australia since federation. The Coalition picked up a 34-seat swing to win a strong majority, with 69 seats–the largest majority government, in terms of percentage of seats controlled, in NSW history. It is only the third time since 1941 that a NSW Labor government has been defeated.
The Australian Labor Party , also known as NSW Labor and Country Labor in regional areas, is the New South Wales branch of the Australian Labor Party. The parliamentary leader is elected from and by the members of the party caucus, comprising all party members in the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council. The party factions have a strong influence on the election of the leader. The leader's position is dependent on the continuing support of the caucus and the leader may be deposed by failing to win a vote of confidence of parliamentary members. By convention, the premier sits in the Legislative Assembly, and is the leader of the party controlling a majority in that house. The party leader also typically is a member of the Assembly, though this is not a strict party constitutional requirement. Barrie Unsworth, for example, was elected party leader while a member of the Legislative Council. He then transferred to the Assembly by winning a seat at a by-election.
Paul Thomas Francis O'Grady was an Australian politician. He was a Labor member of the New South Wales Legislative Council from 1988 to 1996 and was the first openly gay member of the New South Wales Parliament.
The Iemma ministry (2005–07) or First Iemma ministry is the 89th ministry of the Government of New South Wales, and was led by the 40th Premier Morris Iemma. It was the first of two occasions when Iemma was Premier.
The Carr ministry (2003–05) or Fourth Carr ministry was the 88th ministry of the New South Wales Government, and was led by the 39th Premier of New South Wales, the Honourable Bob Carr,, representing the Labor Party.
|New South Wales Legislative Assembly|
| Member for Hurstville |
| Member for Lakemba |
|New title|| Minister Assisting the Premier on Citizenship |
| Minister for Public Works and Services |
| Minister for Sport and Recreation |
as Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation
| Minister for Health |
| Premier of New South Wales |
| Treasurer of New South Wales |
| Minister for Citizenship |
| Minister for State Development |
|Party political offices|
| Leader of the Australian Labor Party in New South Wales |