Wednesday, 26 June 2013

KRudd madness...he's back!***

***Update: The Australian Labor Party has a new leader, Kevin Rudd.

That means that Julia Gillard will resign her commission as Prime Minister.

As the Labor Government is a minority Government, it is not automatically the case that Mr Rudd will be Prime Minister - that is a matter for the Governor-General, who will have to decide whether he has the support of the House.  That could be tested tomorrow morning when the Parliament is scheduled to resume sitting.


The media reported this morning that a Caucus petition for a leadership spill is circulating amongst Labor, spurred by MPs worried about the prospect of a catastrophic election defeat in September.

Utter madness!

Yes Labor is going to lose (bar a miracle).

But will it gain any seats with dumped Prime Minister Rudd back?

Personally I don't think so.

I think the polls showing he would win will turn out to be a mirage, since the problem is not just that the leader of the party is on the nose with the electorate, but rather that the Labor Party is.

All the polls really reflect is that disenchantment.

The Government does have some policy wins on the board.  But the stuff ups  - many of them dating from the Rudd era (pink batts anyone?) - still cloud the air.

And Labor is seen, as Greg Jericho commented this morning as Government that has failed to live up to its moral principles (whether you agree with them or not) on areas like refugees, single mothers and others.  Of course Rudd was no better he was ousted in part due to his failure to act on the 'greatest moral challenge of our time', viz climate change, and has since signalled he will swing his vote behind same sex 'marriage'.

Labor is seen as an incompetent Government.  Sure Ms Gillard has personally contributed to that image with some particularly foolish decisions and spectacularly poor political judgment reflected in things like that speech (putting abortion on the table).  But as Opposition Leader Mr Abbott will surely point out, Mr Rudd was no better, and that he was why he was ousted in the first place.

And let's imagine Rudd did manage to get elected.  Can Labor survive another round of his narcissism?

What should they do?

Despite the media agitation, it is far too late now for Labor to change leaders, even for a third party like up and comer Bill Shorten.

So in an ideal world someone would tell the Rudd supporters to pull their heads in, stop him from campaigning in their electorates, stop feeding the media, and focus on doing what they can to position the party for a recovery after the election.

Janet Albrechtsen wrote a piece in the Australian yesterday suggesting that Rudd should be expelled from the Party for his sabotage efforts.  Much as I like the idea, given the small but loud faction of Rudd supporters amongst MPs, that would probably split the party even further.

But another option might be national intervention to disendorse him from his seat.

The media are the ones who should be sacked!

The other dimension of this latest round of madness that really does need to be addressed is the shameful standard of the media coverage of the whole event.

Last time around, Rudd supporters claimed they had the numbers - and a candidate. When both things proved untrue you might have hoped the media would learn the lesson and focus instead on reporting real news, like helping us to understand whether or not the claims of administrative incompetence, unfair negotiation tactics with the States are true, and looking at the actual merits of the two parties policies.

Instead, they've fuelled the fire once more.

Fortunately, there is twitter.  Here is a selection of the best:

Mark Simkin on ABC reports that the Rudd people have got everything completely organised and nailed down except a definite candidate

Petition: To replace the ALP parliamentary leader with, ☐ Julia Gillard ☐ Kevin Rudd ☐ Bill Shorten ☐ Mad Max ☑ Drover's Dog

If Rudd elected expect resignations from the whole cabinet, all of DFAT and RAAF flight attendants.

**Voting tonight 7pm.

Ms Gillard has once again acted decisively to cut off the speculation and called on a vote.  She has also made a commitment to retire from politics should she lose, and obtained an undertaking to the same effect from Mr Rudd, thus hopefully ending the ongoing destabilisation once and for all.

 My prediction: Gillard loses, Rudd can't get the numbers on the floor of the house due to a lack of support from the Independents, and so Abbott becomes Caretaker PM with an election called immediately...(well OK, maybe I just don't want to see KRudd back under any circumstances!).


Joshua said...

I didn't like Gillard as PM; but I do sincerely feel sorry for her. That sanctimonious hypocrite Rudd is intolerable.

Maureen said...

It's good knitting time though, isn't it? - with channel 24.....
The election campaign will be fun!

R J said...

Oops, it's "Albrechtsen", not "Albrechtson".

John Francis Collins said...

The Apology to the Stolen Generations was one of the high points of Australian political life. It was Rudd and Swan who saved Australia from going the way of Greece, Ireland and Portugal following the GFC. The Carbon tax had bi partisan support until Abbott performed a coup on Turnbull and won by one (1) vote. Does anyone really think that the miners should not pay more into the Australian economy before they move off to Africa or Antarctica. Please someone tell me that the NDIS is a bad thing. Is it really fair that Broadband will only go to those who can afford it and the rest will be left with copper. It is not the copper that is the issue it is the solder holding the copper together at the junctions. Ask any Telstra technician and they will shake their head. The longer Rudd waits to have an election the more the Turnbull forces (remember only one vote) will start sharpening their knives. Politics is interesting again,