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Day to Day Politics: An Abbott waiting for the second coming.

1 As if to support my contention yesterday that if the Coalition wins the election Tony Abbott will at some time challenge for the leadership of the Liberal Party, Peter Dutton confirms it.

Dutton says that Turnbull will be under pressure to give Abbott a portfolio. If Turnbull was to consider it, it would raise a number of issues.

If he does he would be reinstating someone he publicly criticised for his incompetency. The question of his judgement would be raised. After all, Abbott has never been popular even when serving as a minister.

He would also be giving the conservative wing of the party a leader in the Cabinet and place him one step away from the leadership.

What portfolio would he give him? It has been suggested he could take Defence but current minister Marise Payne has been applauded by both sides for her work.

You couldn’t seriously consider him for Health or Education. Well you could but with his penchant for inequality in all its forms it would create a bad public perception. Social Services would be out because it would offend the poor and disadvantaged. Employment, no I’m only joking and anything to do with money you wouldn’t let him touch. Of course as a former Prime Minister nothing less than a senior portfolio would be acceptable.

If the truth be known Turnbull would probably rather not have the badly performing and publicly loathed Dutton in his ministry at all. But as a prominent member of the right of the party, not giving him one would be an own goal.

Of course Abbott is saying and doing all the right things and not rocking the boat. But you would have to be grossly naïve to believe that the former PM is happy to serve his constituents for the next three years on a backbencher’s pay when he could retire on a pension four times as much.

On Thursday he indicated that he didn’t expect to return to the Cabinet and favoured the promotion of younger MPs and women in the Party. Something that as leader he was not fond of doing.

“Tony will make a great contribution in public life, in Parliament, he’s a good friend to all of us and he wants Malcolm Turnbull to be re-elected as prime minister” said Dutton.

“I am not expecting to go back into the ministry and I’m not going to speculate on speculation“.

“It is the job of members of Parliament to serve, that’s why we’re there, and I am expecting to serve the people of Warringah in the new Parliament” Abbott said.

“As I’ve said before, the ministry that I am taking to the election will be the ministry after the election, if the Australian people choose to return my government to office” said Malcolm Turnbull.

There was of course a time when all of this was simply called ‘bullshit’. Now we call it ‘spin’.

One thing is for certain: That being that the Liberal Party is deeply divided and the divisions are unlikely to heal anytime soon. At the moment the right hold sway and Turnbull would have to choose a ministry to their liking. He doesn’t have the support of an enormous public popularity he once enjoyed. Nor will he have a mandate although he will claim one.

So if he wants to keep his job he will have to do their bidding. In the meantime Abbott will be waiting in the wings for his call to stage.

Unlike Whitlam, Turnbull is not the crash through type. It will be his undoing.

2 Writing for the Guardian Lenore Taylor says that the latest attack ad launched by Scott Morrison “takes Coalition scare campaign to the brink of parody”.

She is correct of course, right when she says the government’s rhetoric about the Greens is getting shriller. Perhaps the polling numbers are frightening them.

Or perhaps it just comes naturally to them. The sole intention of the advertisement is to suggest that Labor has been infiltrated by Greens activists who are planning to clinch a deal between the two parties id the Coalition loses. The add if full of incorrect assertions and Liberal garbage. In fact, enough to fill a wheelie bin.

Although there is no evidence of it the ad suggests that Labor is adopting Greens policies ready for a Labor/Greens Government.

An observation.

“It is the misinformed who shout the loudest. The rest of us are content with the truth we enquired about”.

3 The Liberal Party are claiming that they have not broken any rules in redirecting taxpayer funds from Parakeelia to the Party itself and are trying to say the Labor does the same. There is of course a distinct difference. The company Labor pays for a similar data base service doesn’t donate to the party. The Liberal Party-owned company receives taxpayer funds in the form of electorate allowances while also donating large sums to the party. $1 million in all including $500,000 last year.

Of course an enquiry by the Auditor General will be concluded “after the election”.

An observation.

“Good democracies can only deliver good government and outcomes if the electorate demands it”.

4 This week’s Crickey BludgerTrack: 50.5-49.5 to the Coalition.

It’s been an oddly quiet week on the national polling front, though no doubt the coming fortnight will more than make up for it. Besides the regular weekly campaign ReachTEL poll for Seven, the only new result is the latest fortnightly rolling average from Essential Research, out a day later than usual due to the Monday public holiday. This records Labor with a 51-49 lead, returning it to its position before a sudden two-point shift to the Coalition a fortnight ago. The primary votes are Coalition 41% (steady), Labor 37% (up one), Greens 10% (steady) and Nick Xenophon Team 4% (steady).

My thought for the day.

“I think we can often become so trapped in the longevity of sameness that we never see other ways of doing things”.


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  1. Ruth L

    Heaven (or someboy or something) forbid that the abhorrent Abbott ever becomes PM again!

  2. Noddy


  3. helvityni

    The more are see of Turnbull, the less I like him. I’m ashamed to have thought that he’d be an improvement on Abbott.

  4. Glenn K

    Why is it the poll summaries do not break out the coalition primary vote into Liberal and national? Seems the appropriate thing to do considering they compete in many electorates…..

  5. helvityni

    What a snarky little interview from Sales last night, no smiles , no civility towards Di Natale.

  6. jantonius

    Greens Leader Di Natale last night on 7:30:
    “I mean, I think it’s inconceivable that we could support a Coalition government. I think it’s inconceivable. Given their record on the Great Barrier Reef, on dangerous global warming, on refugees and asylum seekers, on making inequality worse – on all of those things they’ve been a disaster. And for that reason, it’s inconceivable, in my view, that we could support a Coalition government.”

  7. michaelattoowoomba

    Hi,just my opinion,but we have a great opportunity to slap Turnballs face with his his stupidity in calling for the debate via Facebook.I have finally joined,so as join the fight.If we all contact all of our friends who have bad internet and offer to post their objections for them by proxy ,we will maybe get some results.It is time to prove to him and his cohorts that there is a lot of people who don’t believe he is any way as he thinks he has the tech skills ,that HE thinks he has.Any one else can please join me.M F

  8. Gangey1959

    Everything the ”turdbott team” (as if he was ever their dealer) comes out with is pure crap. Call it bullshit, spin, or whatever you liker, if it looks like a turd and smells like a turd, it’s tony abbott, (Or anyone else wearing a liberal/national tie. The bitchop slags included)
    Dud-one is just plain thick. As ten very short planks.
    Moronscum is getting more and more paranoid and manic in his anti Labor messages about anything that leaks into his head.
    The advertising from the Australian business council, or whatever the hell the mega business overlords call themselves at the moment are annoying, and if they think that the average $25ish per hour part time Aussie worker is that stupid then maybe they should give us a go at running things properly. A business tax cut linked to wage rises at the bottom end is the only way that workers will benefit.
    And finally, what is all of the fuss about any sort of alliance between Labor and the Greens. Alliances in politics can’t be bad, or the libs and nats wouldn’t do the same thing, and their alliance has just been a resounding success if history is anything to go by. NOT.

    I got a nice glossy card in the letterbox the other day. It’s double sided. And very positive once I thought about it.
    The heading tells me I have a choice at this election. Ya think ?
    Option 1. The coalition’s plan for……. Yeah yeah yeah jobs and growth heard it all before still waiting for some detail. Hmmm. Maybe not.
    Option 2. Labour’s higher taxes, more borrowing and spending. Bugger. Tough choice according to all I’ve read in the papers.
    On the other side is some detail on the Labor stuff.
    1 Higher income tax. I don’t earn enough to pay tax at the moment, so does that mean I’ll get a proper job under Labor ?
    2 New electricity tax. Hmm. 🙁
    3 Increased housing tax. I rent.
    4 Billions in unfunded promises. As opposed to billions in untaxed profits.
    5Weakness on border security. The turdbott team didn’t know that the chinese had bought the Port of Darwin until the septics whined about it all, so how secure is Australia’s border now, mal? Or do you have a hand written promise signed by chairman mao that nothing bad will enter the Australia from china through Darwin? Let the boat people in, but keep the container ships under OUR control.
    6 Reducing the value of your home. Maybe after all of the dust has settled I might be able to buy one again. Yay for me.
    So all in all, the lnp scare card from the mail, once you think about it, is really a pro Labor card, because it suggests that I will get a job, and be able to pay my bills, buy a house at a more reasonable price, even if I have to go back to paying tax. Bummer.

    Turdbott’s team is right. At this election, we DO have a choice.

  9. jimhaz

    Ad hoc comment

    “Chris Jermyn has been the car-crash candidate of the election campaign”

    Chris Jermyn to me looks like Carl Williams…seems to act with complete disregard to due process as well.

  10. Freethinker

    Knowing how expert this mob become to wreaking things it would not surprise me if he becomes the minister for science and innovation ,

  11. Jack Russell

    But the Greens HAVE supported the Coalition government – more than once – and the outcomes were not good.

  12. Freethinker

    Jack, as long as the Greens stop the government touch the Medicare, education, welfare and the draconian laws proposed in the budgets I am happy.
    I have not a single party or politician that I agree with all their policies, so a compromise have to be made.

  13. Terry2

    I think Abbott would have to climb over Morrison to get the leadership back and just listening to the arrogance and aggression of Morrison in recent times it would appear that he sees himself as the next Liberal leader after Turnbull.

  14. Michael

    The choice for me is either going backward (in response to no plan, scare tactics – list – and …. abbott and darkness) or going forward (to reap the benefits of sound investment, in education, NBN, etc in the future and brightness) – a lay down misere really

  15. FreeThinker

    Interesting that Gillard was hounded for more than two years for her ‘ There will be no carbon tax …. In a government I lead …. etc ‘ by the MSM.

    But Abbott’s litany of political promises immediately prior to the 2013 election, all of which turned out to be lies, has been forgotten in the media hubris of the LNP saviour Turnbull, becoming Prime Minister. But this government remains an Abbott-Turnbull administration, characterised on the one hand by Abbott’s systematic lies, and with The Jobs and Growth Turnbull havinf done nothing for the Australian people, in his 9 months of leadership.

    However, the botched NBN remains Turnbull’s signature card from 2013-2016, and the Australian people should not be allowed to forget this.

    Hard to see how Abbott could make any contribution in Turnbull ministry. Perhaps Minister for Re-Rycling ( ie re-cycling facile political slogans), and Men’s Fitness, would be the ‘ best’ I could offer him.

    Though clearly Australia’s worst Prime Minister since 1901, Abbott hopes he can ‘ do a John Howard ‘ and become leader again, but my hope is he will follow John Howard by being voted out of his electorate of Warringah. That would be a fitting political finale for him.

    I am a different FreeThinker to the correspondent who features in the comments above. Could be the beginnings of a political movement: ‘ Free Thinkers Anonymous’ perhaps !

  16. kerri

    I have been saying for months, anyone who thinks if they vote for Malcolm they will get the true man is sadly misled! The LNP cannot win with Malcolm alone. Regardless of how good Malcolm is or could be, for him to win we will have to accept Dutton, Abbott, Brandis, Cash, Pyne, Abetz, Bernardi, Christensen, Joyce, Ley and all the other useless right wing twerps.
    We need to get the message clear to anyone who thinks voting LNP will usher in a Turnbull led government.
    As Shorten rightly said Turnbull does not lead his party! He does their bidding.
    Turnbull leapt at the opportunity to defrock Abbott as he knows at his age he would not have many more chances and he has always held the belief that he was born to be PM.
    The Faustian pact writ large!

  17. michaelattoowoomba

    Hi again John.Got your next post [ 4.20 pm ] as usual by subscribed email.Can’t click on it as usual,says page unavailable.Dont know if my computer or some thing else.Simply reporting in case you or Michael or crew can somehow fix it.M F.

  18. Michael Taylor

    Michael, that was my fault. I was having a look at it (I’m nosy) and I accidentally clicked on “Publish” instead of “Save”. I recalled it, but it will be back up again in the morning.

    I have egg on my face.

  19. paul walter

    Know how he feels. Had this prob with
    Bigpond again today, did all the plugging and unplugging and plugging in again, phoned them up and he said leave the cable itself disconnected for twenty minutes. For the love of god, it worked, after twenty minutes, but gee computers remain a problem for old duffers sometimes.

  20. michaelattoowoomba

    Thanks Michael,I am illiterate computer wise glad it is fixed.I so enjoy Johns posts [ as all the others ]. M F.

    P S. please don’t feel guilty,some of the bigger commercials would be jealous of your mistake % [ very small.

  21. JeffJL

    Why do the media continue to parrot the Coalition in saying that both parties pay their allowances to companies to do research on us. The issue with Parakeelia is the recycling of money back to the Liberal party. Are they being deliberately mischievous?

  22. Terry2


    Thank you for that. Sometimes I think these politicians really think we are stupid.

    We know that Parakeelia is owned by the Liberal Party, we know that over $1000,000 of taxpayer funds has been laundered from Liberal politicians to Parakeelia and then to the Liberal Party over the last three years.
    We know that Parakeelia is the second largest contributor to Liberal Party campaign funds.

    This is wrong and we need a commitment for an enquiry and a complete overhaul of political donations and funding.

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