With the budget around the corner, and then an election ahead, it’s all about short-term imperatives

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Let’s be clear about what the Turnbull government wants. Internal intrigues notwithstanding – Peter Dutton’s inclination to spread his wings and Julie Bishop’s equal and opposite inclination to clip them – the objective of the next couple of months is plotting a path to political recovery.

The aim is to set some bedrock, then begin to claw back lost ground. In that environment, pesky strictures such as fiscal rules are so yesterday.

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