Saturday 2 December 2017
1 I find myself bracing for a very big week next week. Maybe it will be the one that breaks Malcolm Turnbull. He will carry into the week the thoughts of the Deputy Premier of NSW. That being that he should resign by Christmas. Now I’m struggling to remember his name. Yes that’s it, John Barilaro, not that it matters much for they carry the message. “The Prime Minister should resign before Christmas.”
The week of course will start with a prelude to the second last week of Parliament for the year. And then there’s the New England by-election. Barnaby Joyce won New England seat at the 2016 election with a margin of 8.5% from Independent Tony Windsor. His two-party preferred margin versus Labor was a much safer 16.4%.
Joyce entered this campaign with a number of controversies on his shoulders. The movement, against its will, of a government department into his electorate at a cost of around $25 million. Then there was the pub episode where he laughed about his capacity to steal water. And now we have him staring down his leader over the need for a Royal Commission into the big four Australian banks.
Barnaby hasn’t appeared much personally which is probably due to family problems. It certainly wouldn’t help being asked about the well-being of ones marriage on the campaign trail.
“When the flame of love has become but an ember and the candle no longer burns. Is it to late to strike another match?”
I’m tipping that his lead will be reduced by a swing of 8%. A huge swing but Labor couldn’t possibly win the seat. David Ewings will again stand for Labor in what can only be described as a Melbourne Cup field of 17.
2 Then on Monday another Newspoll is due for publication with the Prime Minister fast approaching that magical figure of 30.
Everyone – or at least everyone interested in these things – will be wondering just how Turnbull will respond to what was his measure of leadership when Tony Abbott lost 30 Newspolls in a row. It’s hard to say if the polls have bottomed out or indeed if the events of last week will take both the PM and his party any lower.
My bet, for what it’s worth, is that the Banks backflip, and the criticism from NSW Deputy Leader John Barilaro will shave another percentage point from the TPP giving Labor an 11% two party preferred lead. Preferred PM will be about even. Especially now that superannuation has been included in the banking.
It looks as though all the planets are aligning to bring Turnbull down. Barilaro used Turnbull hater Alan Jones’s show to berate the PM and argue that the PM should step aside.
“Turnbull is the problem, the prime minister is the problem”.
“You’ve got a party in disarray, a Coalition government in disarray and a community not unified and that is all at the feet of the prime minister of Australia,” he said.
One can only conclude that the Nationals in collusion with Barnaby Joyce have launched a full frontal attack on the Prime Minister. They are no longer in Coalition.
3 On top of all this it seems the conservatives will not let the Marriage Equality Bill pass without an amendment on freedom of religion that will see Labor vote against it so that it will be on the record. The people will see the attempt to wedge Labor for what it is and yet again mark down the Coalition for its intransigence.
4 We can expect the MYEFO statement any day and then we will have a better picture of how the economy is running.
5 On top of that The Prime Minister promised to release a report, prior to Christmas, on MP’s expenses.
6 And then after our January hibernation we can start on the Energy Guarantee legislation, yet again. Personally, I find the most objectionable feature of conservative attitude is its propensity to reject well-substantiated new knowledge, science in other words, because it dislikes some of the consequences which follow from it. The conservative attitude to renewable energy is just as sick as many of their other policies.
My thought for the day
”The rise of the right has brought with it a new political language. One that has not yet been classified because it defies any normal understanding of what the word truth means.”