Michaelia Clare Cash is an Australian politician and a member of the Liberal Party of Australia. She was born on 19 July 1970 in Subiaco, Western Australia to Ursula Clare Yelland and Samuel Ernest “George” Cash, the owner of a construction company who later served as President of the Western Australian Legislative Council. Cash was educated at Iona Presentation College, a Catholic school in Mosman Park, and graduated from Curtin University in 1990 with a Bachelor of Arts with a triple major in public relations, politics, and journalism. She also holds an Honours Degree in Law from the University of London and a Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice from the University of Western Australia.
Prior to her political career, Cash worked as a solicitor with the law firm Freehills where she practiced in all areas of employment and industrial law including industrial relations, employee relations, occupational health and safety, equal opportunity, executive employment, and unfair dismissal. She joined the Liberal Party in 1988 and held various positions in the Western Australian Young Liberal Movement, including State Vice-President. She was also a long-time member of the Liberal Party of Western Australia’s State Council and served as the President of the Moore Division.
Cash was elected to the Federal Parliament at the 2007 federal election and has been a Senator for Western Australia since 2008. Since entering Federal Parliament, Cash has served on many Senate Committees and was also a Temporary Chair of Committees between February and September 2010. In September 2010, while in opposition, Cash was promoted to the positions of Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for the Status of Women and the Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Immigration. At this time, Cash was also appointed Deputy Manager of Opposition Business in the Senate.
After the election of the Abbott government in September 2013, Cash was sworn in as the Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, as well as the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women. Following a leadership change that led to the formation of the Turnbull government, Cash was sworn in on 21 September 2015 as the Minister for Employment, the Minister for Women, and the Minister Assisting the Prime Minister on the Public Service.
Cash has been criticized for refusing to release a report into an 18-year-old who died while on a Work for the Dole assignment in April 2016. She offered her resignation from the frontbench on 22 August 2018, during the events of the Liberal Party of Australia leadership spill, 2018. However, she was appointed as the Minister for Small and Family Business, Skills, and Vocational Education in the First Morrison Ministry. In the Second Morrison Ministry, she was appointed the Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, and the Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate.
On 29 March 2021, it was announced that Cash would be appointed as Attorney-General and Minister for Industrial Relations in a cabinet reshuffle replacing Christian Porter. She was sworn in on the following day and served in the position until 2022.
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