Hugh Morgan, Norm Gallagher, Max Ogden and Rob Elliot are all important in understanding Gillard's role in the AWU Scandal
(Former HSU Secretary Rob Elliot, who chose not to spend his life looking over his shoulder)
To put the AWU Workplace Reform Association in perspective, we need to examine the history of Wilson/Gillard/Ludwig working together.
In 1989 Slater and Gordon started working for the AWU Victoria Branch.
By October 1989 Julia Gillard and Bruce Wilson were solidly working together in WA.
To understand the Gillard/Wilson relationship, it’s useful to look at a similar professional/personal/political relationship Gillard fostered with Rob Elliot and Kay Darveniza of the Health Services Union in 1989.
Here are some extracts from Rob Elliot’s statement exhibited by the TURC
(Rob Elliot notoriously recanted para 56 in the witness box - I’ve spoken to him privately and he’s told me the contents of para 56 are accurate. Make your own mind up about where you think the truth lies.)
And here's the transcript of a brief part of Rob Elliot's oral examination at the TURC.
Q. Could you come to paragraph 55 of the document,
20 please. Just to put it in context, you are describing here
21 in this paragraph your dealings with other persons in or
22 associated with the labour movement. You are describing in
23 particular some dealings that you had with Ms Gillard?
24 A. Yes.
26 Q. You say in 55:
28 Ms Gillard was supportive of a
29 'reform group' in which I was involved in
30 the HSU in the late 1980s.
32 Who were the members of that reform group?
33 A. Well, a reform group I think, generally speaking in
34 all unions, is pretty ill-defined. It would at least,
35 I think, include the candidates in an election, but
36 probably more broadly their cadre of supporters.
38 Q. Did that include Ms Darveniza?
39 A. Yes, she was a lead candidate.
41 Q. This is in the late '80s?
42 A. '89 I think was the election.
44 Q. '89. You say:
46 Ms Gillard and Slater & Gordon became legal
47 advisers to the ... No. 2 Branch ...
2 That was at about that time, was it?
3 A. Some time later. I'm not quite sure when.
5 Q. You say.
7 ... Ms Gillard continued to give, not just
8 strictly legal advice, but also offered
9 more general political counsel.
11 You mean to yourself and others?
12 A. Yes, sir.
14 Q. You knew her personally, I take it?
15 A. I've known Julia since university days, yes.
17 Q. You say:
19 It was generally understood that success
20 for Ms Gillard's allies in union elections
21 was of benefit to Ms Gillard's political
22 career and, in turn, Ms Gillard's
23 advancement would benefit those unions (and
24 the union movement generally).
26 Just looking at that sentence a bit more carefully, you
27 say, "It was generally understood", you mean among those
28 with whom you were associating in the HSU?
29 A. That's generally understood in the labour movement.
30 There are factions with the factual leaders and grandees.
31 I was a member of a faction which included Ms Gillard. It
32 was widely accepted. I mean, amongst a great number of
33 people, Ms Gillard was a rising star. As far as I can
34 remember, I was also of the belief that Ms Gillard would
35 one day be Prime Minister. There are some people who just
36 strike you as being of that ilk.
38 Q. You say:
40 It was generally understood that success
41 for Ms Gillard's allies in union elections
42 was of benefit to Ms Gillard's political
45 You mean because persons who had received the support of
46 Ms Gillard in union elections would be able, in turn, to
47 throw their support behind Ms Gillard in her political
2 A. That's the way it works in the Labor Party,
3 Mr Stoljar.
5 Q. You say it would also work the other way, Ms Gillard's
6 advancement would benefit those unions?
7 A. I think that's correct. That's also how it works in
8 the Labor Party and I suspect every other political party.
10 Q. Two way street?
11 A. Two way street.
Note the mixture of professional legal advice and political machinations.
You scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours.