The Biden administration insisted from the outset that it might solely think about pursuing the landmark AUKUS challenge if it had stable help from each main Australian political events, but Prime Minister Scott Morrison selected to not seek the advice of Labor till the day earlier than its announcement.
White House officers emphasised the purpose as a deal-breaker within the very first dialogue on Australia’s request for nuclear-propelled submarines. The AUKUS safety pact between Australia, the US and UK was signed in September.
The prime minister despatched a particular emissary, Australia’s spy chief Andrew Shearer, to broach the subject with two senior officers, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan and the White House US Indo-Pacific Co-Ordinator, Kurt Campbell on May 1 final yr.
“We asked lots of questions about politics,” stated Campbell in an interview. “Would this be contentious? Would this hold?”
Bipartisan political dedication from Labor and Liberal was a prerequisite, the Americans stated.
“This would be a military marriage. It would have to hold over decades.”
When requested why he had determined to not seek the advice of Labor over AUKUS till the final minute, Morrison advised The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age: “I believed the Labor party would support it.” He was proved proper.
Morrison and officers briefed Labor chief Anthony Albanese and the Labor management the day earlier than the deliberate announcement.