Despite the result of the election being a foregone conclusion, the extent of the shellacking Labor copped is a surprise to pretty much everyone.
It was pretty much a given that the LNP would win with the very big “It’s Time” factor of being in power for 14 years (20 years if you’re an LNP supporter), but it’s supremely disappointing that the voters of Ashgrove swallowed Newman’s spin and voted him in. They now expect to be fully ignored and treated as the stepping stone to higher office that there were meant to be.
I would like to congratulate News Limited (especially the Courier Mail) on an outstanding campaign…not for them the short term blitz of the election campaign proper, but they played the long game sticking the knife into the ALP at every single opportunity over the past 3 years with lurid headlines and vaguely fact-bearing articles. It was a masterful effort at opinion shaping. Of course they let themselves down a bit when the Newman dodgy deals stuff came out, but that was just so juicy that they couldn’t help themselves and reverted to their baser instincts.
Now of course we can expect the current NSW and Vic disease to wend its way up here, with broken promises, deals for mates, and public service cutbacks galore. I fully expect Tim Nicholls to come out before the week is up proclaiming that the budget is worse than expected and that the promises will not be honoured/deeper cuts will be made. OF course it will be conveniently forgotten that the budget was thoroughly vetted by both the independent Treasury and Auditor General, as was pointed out during the election coverage on Saturday night.
The Goldfish Bowl talking heads were out in full flight today pontificating on the effect of this result for the Federal Government, drawing fantastical predictions of no seats won in Queensland blah blah blah, doom and gloom, blah blah blah. All this despite the entire election campaign on both sides being run on State issues, particularly that Labor have been in power for “20” years (LNP time). But then since when have Mark Riley and Graham Richardson been taken seriously by anyone apart from the hosts of Sunrise. Richo had the nerve to say that the ALP needs to focus on what will win them seats in Western Sydney, then had the gall to accuse them of not governing well. I thought the actual problem was that they were governing for everyone and not pandering to the Western Sydney bogan to win an election…the other alternative is to go back to the Howard years of governing to the next election instead of for the greater future.
Anyway time will tell how things go up here…though I struggle to see how a political party that was so devoid of talent that they had to go outside their own ranks for a leader suddenly has the skills to govern effectively. Should be fun…
With the election upon us on Saturday it’s already a pretty foregone conclusion that the LNP will romp in and that Labor will be shellacked thoroughly.
I know there is a big “it’s time” factor with getting the LNP over the line, but it’s profoundly disappointing that no-one is paying attention to the astonishing lack of talent in the LNP ranks. The fact that they had to go to someone outside their ranks to lead them is a pretty serious indicator that there is nothing going on at all. The fact that that they barely laid a glove on a seriously blunder-prone ALP government is telling…the Courier Mail was the defacto Opposition for most of this time.
The Presidential style campaign by both sides has been a telling factor in hiding the deficiencies in both camps, but I think Campbell Newman has been extremely lucky to be in the position he is in.
Normally a pollie who jumped ship from a major disaster recovery effort for a big promotion leveraging his elevated public profile who have strips torn off him, but he has managed to skate through relatively unharmed.
The questions about his and his families business dealings are verging on the suss, but the manner that the ALP pursued it has turned off as lot of voters…unnecessarily I think. I believe he still has some questions to answer and his continual answer of “I’ve done nothing wrong” is your standard get out clause, conveniently sidestepping the issue of someone he has employed doing something wrong.
Newman has always been a prickly character and is remarkably thin-skinned for a politican…witness his refusal to shake Kate Jones’ hand after the debate, insisting that she personally apologise to his wife.
The other serious question of his character revolves around the leadership issue. Now it’s anything but a foregone conclusion that he will win Ashgrove, so any normal organisation would have a back-up plan especially in this unique situation. This gives us two options; either they have no “Plan B” or they have a backup plan and are not going to communicate it.
If they do not have a backup plan then they are either incredibly stupid, or amazingly arrogant to assume that he will win.
If they do have a backup plan but don’t want to publicise it then this is an indication that they do not have faith that people are voting for the party but simply voting for the leader i.e. only voting LNP to get Newman in power. This seems to indicate that they have no confidence in the abilities of the other leadership candidates or their appeal to the public.
So though this campaign is all about Newman, he can’t govern the state by himself and requires others of some ability to govern with him…and it appears that none of his colleagues have that ability but are being masked by the Newman hoopla.
I’m afraid we’ll have to suffer through another 3 years of neglect, but hopefully the voters of Ashgrove will come to their senses and make sure that the tunnel builder extraordinaire will not get a seat and can bugger off back to his dodgy developments.