Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Back To the Future Part I: The Implosion

Kevin Rudd just resigned as Foreign Minister. The ALP is a joke. Its Caucus members are even worse. The Prime Minister has no leadership credibility. Tony Abbott can call his interior decorator to start planning colour schemes for The Lodge. This is what we know.

As Annabel Crabb stated on Twitter Rudd’s words were not ‘…a press conference, but a victim impact statement. Although he was careful to make no firm commitments, the subtext was clear for any political commentators who know how to read between the lines.

I will consider my options, I'm not sure I have the numbers, I have to check this weekend. If I do, It is on, and I'll have the courage to be honest about it, unlike you were last time.

How do I know? Well I don’t really, but it is my best guess. The heart of my PhD thesis revolves around ALP leadership challenges. Rudd is using the same tactic he used to vanquish Beazley in 2006. It is also the same as tactic Crean used to promote Latham to the leadership in 2003. It is quite a coincidence that I happen to be researching both of these for my PhD thesis at this exact time.

The wider consequences for the ALP are brutal, whatever the outcome. Challenge or no, a former Prime Minister will be gone for good by Tuesday. Although it is of course easy to say and much harder to do, if both Gillard and Rudd worked together on policy and not undermined each other and worked cohesively just as they had promised in 2006, the ALP could have been staring down numerous election victories, a decade plus in power, and two bloody good Prime Ministers. What we have instead is a bitch fight on a national scale.

Australia’s oldest political party took a huge dose of Viagra in June 2010, got just enough enhancement to win that year’s Federal Election, and now the side effects have kicked in. The ALP will have a heart attack and may drop dead.

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