International Women’s Day once more this year found Australia in one of its periodic rounds of head-scratching about why there aren’t more women in federal politics.

“Looking back on my time in politics, I’m not sure we understood how profound that change could be,” says shadow minister for climate change and energy Mark Butler, who as a senior party figure in his home state of South Australia shared responsibility for enforcing the policy in the 1990s and 2000s.

Would Julia Gillard have become PM without Labor’s experiment?

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