The year 2007 may well be remembered as one being short on major industrial disputation, yet one where industrial relations itself dominated public discussion and political life of the country like no other time in Australia's history. It was a year dominated by the electoral cycle, with both organized labour as well as major employers playing their cards very carefully, lest they provide political ammunition to their political and industrial opponents. Thanks largely to the effectiveness of the union movement's anti Work Choices campaign, major employer groups and their political allies the Howard government found themselves fighting a rearguard, and ultimately losing, battle, valiantly trying to defend the Work Choices regime. At year's end, the Liberal government had lost office, Prime Minister John Howard had lost his own seat in Parliament, and the Rudd Labor Government had been swept to power with a clear mandate to dismantle the Work Choices regime. Yet despite this conclusion to a year dominated by debate over industrial relations, it seems that employers had nevertheless lobbied Labor party leaders successfully enough to secure the continuation of many key components of the former Howard government's industrial relations regime.
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