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Who Is Mark Latham? Discover This Politician Through 6 FAQs!

Mark Latham

Former Australian politician, Mark Latham was the leader of the Australian Labor Party Federal Parliamentary Commission and leader of the opposition from December 2003 to January 2005. He was born in the early half of 1961, has the royal name William as his middle name, and lived his whole life in Australia. Let’s explore more facts about his life through these 6 short questions! 

Mark Latham’s Life and Career Explained In 6 Simple Questions! 

1. Who Is Mark Latham?  

Mark William Latham (born 28 February 1961) is an Australian politician and was the leader of the Australian Labor Party from 2003 to 2005. Before becoming an MP, Latham was a member of Liverpool Council from 1987 to 1994, during which time he was Mayor from 1991 to 1994.

2. Where did Mark Latham grow up?

Mark Latham grew up in the suburb of Green Valley, near Liverpool to the west of Sydney in the state of New South Wales. 

In 1982 he graduated from the University of Sydney but before college, he attended Ashcroft State School, then Hurlstone Agricultural High School, finally graduating with an Honors BA in Economics from the University of Sydney as we stated in the year 1982.

3. When did Mark Latham resign? 

Elected to the Australian House of Representatives in 1994, he was able to defend his mandate in 1996, 1998 and 2001. On 2 December 2003, Latham was elected leader of the Australian Labor Party, replacing Simon Crean. 

Mark Latham held this office until his resignation on January 18, 2005. Since Latham had also resigned his mandate for his seat in the Australian House of Representatives, Chris Hayes moved up to his seat there. Hayes previously won the March 2005 by-election. Kim Beazley became the new leader of the Australian Labor Party.

FUN FACT: 

On paper, it was stated that Latham wanted to retire from politics for medical reasons: he officially suffers from pancreatitis; nevertheless the heavy defeat of Labor during the legislative elections of October 9, 2004 is not unrelated to its withdrawal.

Throughout his tenure in Australian politics, Latham was criticized for what some called his brash and confrontational attitude – but which others saw as the strength of individualism. He then worked for various media outlets, although his tenures were often short-lived, in part due to complaints about his behavior. Notably, in 2016 Latham was hired by Sky News, and that year he started to co-host the Outsiders talk show on the channel. 

However, after a series of controversial comments, which included questioning the sexuality of a student celebrating International Women’s Day, Sky News terminated his political contract in 2017. By 2018, he came back to politics and to One Nation, a right-wing, anti-immigrant party, and became its leader in New South Wales. A nation’s performance in the 2019 elections earned it a seat in the state Legislative Council.

4. How did Mark Latham start his career?

Before entering parliament, he was a political adviser to Gough Whitlam and Bob Carr. Between 1987 and 1994 he was a Liverpool City Councilor and served as its mayor between 1991 and 1994.

Elected to the Australian House of Representatives in 1994, he led the federal parliament as a Labor candidate in the Werriwa constituency and was re-elected to that post in March 1996, October 1998, and November 2001. During the same year, Mark L was promoted to the Shadow Ministry, the opposition ministry, on 22 November 2001. 

After Simon Crean replaced Beazley following the 2001 election, Latham was brought back to the front row, this time as shadow economic property minister. 

Replacing Simon Crean, Mark Latham was the leader of the Labor Party from 2 December 2003 until 18 January 2005. When Simon Crean lost his party’s trust and resigned, he lent his support to Latham, who was confirmed by his party in December 2003 and became, at 42, the youngest leader of the ALP in 100 years.

In 2004, Latham challenged Conservative coalition leader John Howard for the post of Prime Minister. Latham focused his campaign on education and health care reform, and he took a tough stance against Australia’s involvement in the US-led Iraq war, pledging to withdraw Australian troops from the conflict, which also prompted a response from American presidents. George W. Bush. Although Latham enjoyed a high success rate early in the campaign, he was routed in the October election.

Latham’s defeat in 2004 weakened the PLA, and in January 2005 he announced his resignation from parliament and the party leadership over concerns about his health. 

5. What happened between Mark Latham and Anthony Albanese? 

Mark Latham once slammed Anthony Albanese for an overseas trip and gave him a new nickname, accusing him of neglecting pressing issues in Australia. The One Nation NSW leader referred to the Prime Minister as ‘Aeroflot Albo’, adding to Mr Albanese’s inventory of nicknames which include ‘Airbus Albo’ and ‘Albo Overseas’. 

Mark Latham joined opposition MPs Dan Tehan and Angus Taylor, who had openly criticized the Prime Minister for spending a third of his time abroad. Mr. Albanese had traveled to Japan, Indonesia, Spain, France, and Ukraine to meet with world leaders since his election to power on May 21.

“There have been a lot of comments about the absence of Anthony Albanese from Australia,” Mr Latham wrote this year in July. 

“Obviously, during the election campaign, when he spoke very little about foreign policy, he had in mind, if he won, to go overseas as quickly as possible and rub shoulders with the political elite”, he continued.

6. Is Mark Latham a good political leader, are there any controversies? 

  • Back in 2004, Mark Latham only narrowly won the confidence of Labor MPs, by 47 votes against 45 for Kim Beazley. 
  • Mark is known for having treated the Prime Minister as George W. Bush’s “ass-licker”. 
  • Latham also has other flaws: he’s unruly, he can be dismissive, he’s generally sure of himself, and he can be both conservative and inflexible on key issues. 
  • He is to the right of what is currently a very right-wing party. 
  • He’s as emotionally engaged as old-fashioned Labor – but far cooler-headed and is a man who knows what he thinks and says it. And, as everyone recognizes today, he is passionate.

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