Today he has retreated on his threat to cut 1700 research jobs, announcing the government will split funding for their positions from its plan to deregulate university fees.
In another major backdown, the government is also prepared to sacrifice $1.9 billion in savings by separating a proposed 20 per cent cut to course funding from the bill to deregulate university fees.
The cross benches still say they won't vote for it. Let's see if if they are men and women of their word? Surely after yet another failure he should resign as a minister.