The first stanza of this election year will be characterised by political parties trialling election strategies to see which have traction with voters and which are a waste of precious campaign funds.

Putting aside all the electoral complications, an unseemly rush to the ballot box without an adequate explanation of Malcolm Turnbull’s plans for economic repair would seriously test the public’s trust.

The Political Weekly: While we were relaxing, our PM decided to take out the trash – starting with one minister.

The royal commission into union corruption may have cleared Bill Shorten, but the Labor leader is still facing pressure over his party’s union links and in many ways his job has just been made harder.

The Political Weekly: our politicians gave voters whiplash as breathtaking displays of political acrobatics and pratfalls competed for our attention.

Royal commissioner Dyson Heydon wants more time to decide whether he should be disqualified over a perception of bias. But what effect will that have on our political leaders?

The Political Weekly: Coalition in-fighting, Julie Bishop’s tactical move and cries of racism.

Labor and the Government are locked in an arm wrestle over Dyson Heydon and the union royal commission that will define their election strategies.

The Political Weekly: There was a new Speaker but the parliamentary rabble was back to its rowdy best.

Securing a second term in power won’t be easy for an unpopular PM, but as in life, timing is everything. These are the reasons for an against and early poll.