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Mark Knight cartoon captures federal election outcome

Mark Knight, May 26, 2022 6:00PM Kids News

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Cartoonist Mark Knight captures the federal election result in his latest cartoon for Kids News. media_cameraCartoonist Mark Knight captures the federal election result in his latest cartoon for Kids News.


Reading level: orange

Finally the six week federal election campaign has come to an end and at last we have a result.

Well not entirely, they are still counting postal votes in seats that are too close to call, but our great democratic* process has delivered us a new government and a host of new politicians heading to Canberra.

Now please don’t start to nod off as I give you a quick rundown on what happened because this is important and, to political nerds like me, quite exciting.

The huge news is prime minister Scott Morrison and his Liberal party suffered a heavy defeat, losing key heartland* seats across the country.

BESTPIX - Scott Morrison Conceded Defeat In 2022 Australian Federal Election media_cameraScott Morrison concedes defeat on election night, flanked by wife Jenny Morrison and daughters Lily and Abbey. Picture: Getty Images

Independent candidates and the Greens party won more seats than ever before. The “teal” independents, a grouping of professional women running in traditional Liberal seats, kicked some serious butt and ousted leading government MPs including treasurer Josh Frydenberg!

But the big take-out from the poll is that Anthony Albanese and the Labor Party won the most seats and are now the new government.

And “Albo”, as he is known, has replaced “ScoMo” as PM.

So much to unpack*, but it was my job to try to encapsulate* the result in a cartoon for the newspaper.

I thought I would look at two aspects*: the first being the massive loss by the Liberal Party; and the second being Mr Albanese’s win for Labor after being in opposition for more than 10 years.

Anthony Albanese Claims Victory In The 2022 Federal Election media_cameraLabor Leader Anthony Albanese claims victory on election night, with his partner, Jodie Haydon, and his son, Nathan, by his side. Picture: Getty Images

I was helped in my task by an admission by Scott Morrison during the election campaign that he was “a bit of a bulldozer” at times.

Opinion polls were revealing that he had an image problem and stories in the media of his bullying personality were damaging his re-election prospects*.

To try and fix things he came out in a press conference and made the bulldozer confession but said if he won the election he would change. Too late!

My cartoonist’s brain instantly had images of ScoMo as a bright yellow bulldozer ploughing through stuff.

So when the election was lost, and the Liberal party vote had collapsed, I knew exactly how it all fell down.

I drew a proud Liberal Party headquarters building with its elaborate* facade*. But unfortunately behind the facade it was falling down, with rubble everywhere and right in the middle of that rubble was our little yellow bulldozer.

These metaphorical* caricatures* speak volumes when trying to visually describe a politician. To simply draw the former prime minister as a machine among the debris of an election loss paints an immediate picture for the reader.

ALBO media_cameraLabor leader and new prime minister Anthony Albanese steps out with his dog, Toto, the morning after his election victory. Picture: Darren Leigh Roberts

I knew I had to add our election winner Mr Albanese, so I sketched him walking past. We all saw the images of Albo the day after the election, walking to a local coffee shop with his dog, Toto, to celebrate the win.

I drew Albo and Toto strolling past the catastrophic* scene of the Liberal headquarters. He is using that well known phrase we heard from Scott Morrison in election campaign ads run by the Labor Party.

“That’s not my job,” Albo says when ScoMo laments* the need to rebuild the Liberal Party.

That’s politics, I guess. One day you’re the prime minister, the next day you’re history!


  • democratic: based on a form of government in which the people choose leaders by voting
  • heartland: the centre of support for a belief or a group with the same beliefs or goals
  • unpack: analyse
  • encapsulate: to express or show the most important facts about something
  • aspects: parts
  • prospects: the possibility or likelihood that something will happen
  • elaborate: having a lot of decoration, lots of detail and design
  • facade: the outside of a building
  • metaphorical: using a metaphor, which is when you use something to represent or be a symbol of something else
  • caricatures: drawings which exaggerates certain characteristics of a person
  • catastrophic: involving or causing sudden great damage or suffering
  • laments: expresses regret or disappointment about something


Meet Australia’s new prime minister

Bulldozer PM crashes into young soccer player


  1. How does Mark Knight describe himself when explaining that he found the election exciting?
  2. What two aspects did Mark want to capture in his cartoon?
  3. Why did Mark draw Scott Morrison as a bulldozer?
  4. Why does Mark use metaphorical caricatures like these?
  5. What is the name of Anthony Albanese’s dog?


1. What happens next?
Imagine this cartoon is part of a story that is made up of three cartoons. The three cartoons tell a complete story, and Mark’s cartoon is the start of the story. Think about what the story could be and draw the next two cartoons that tell the story.

Time: allow 30 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum Links: English, Visual Arts, Visual Communication Design, Critical and Creative Thinking

2. Extension
Being able to draw is only one of the skills needed to be a great cartoonist. Write a list of all of the other skills that you think cartoonists like Mark need to do their job.

Next to each skill, write a sentence that explains why that skill is important or helps them to do a great job.

Time: allow at least 20 minutes to complete this activity
Curriculum Links: English, Personal and Social Capability, Media Arts, Visual Communication Design

Wow word recycle
There are plenty of wow words (ambitious pieces of vocabulary) being used in the article. Some are in the glossary, but there might be extra ones from the article that you think are exceptional as well.

Identify all the words in the article that you think are not common words, and particularly good choices for the writer to have chosen.

Select three words you have highlighted to recycle into your own sentences.

If any of the words you identified are not in the glossary, write up your own glossary for them.

Extra Reading in civics