Scott Morrison, Anthony Albanese continue campaigns; Malcolm Turnbull encourages voters to back independents; PM rejects minimum wage rise; Labor accuses Liberals of stealing education policy

The man doing Alan Tudge’s job doesn’t know where he is. Stuart Robert, the acting education minister, told morning TV he wasn’t keeping track of where his fellow cabinet minister is these days.

He’s not alone. Very few people seem to know where Tudge is, although Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he’ll return as education minister if the Coalition wins the election.

Alan Tudge was in isolation with COVID-19 for a week.Credit:alex ellinghausen

Twenty-five days into the campaign and Tudge, who holds the unusual position of a stood-aside minister awaiting a return to cabinet, has held no press conferences, issued no policies and conducted no interviews. He has not appeared alongside the prime minister or with any other ministers as they campaign around the country.

The Victorian MP, who is campaigning for re-election in his safe seat of Aston, has instead run a hyper-local campaign that has been carefully documented on Facebook, far from media scrutiny. He has declined to debate Labor’s Tanya Plibersek on education – the portfolio Scott Morrison expects him to hold if the Coalition wins the election.

Alan Tudge has not been easy to find in the campaign.

Alan Tudge has not been easy to find in the campaign.

The Age and Sydney Morning Herald made numerous attempts to discuss the campaign with Tudge via his ministerial office, knocked on his electorate office door and spoke to his chief of staff and electorate officer over the course of weeks.

His staff said he would not be doing interviews and supplied a written statement. He also did not respond to direct attempts to contact him.

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