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How has it come to this?

By Ad astra

The MSM and blog sites abound with critiques of the election and tentative predictions of the political outcomes. So why bother writing yet another to explain how it has all come to this? You will judge whether this analysis adds anything useful.

Far from fulfilling his oft repeated promise of stable government and sound economic management; far from avoiding the ‘chaos’ of a close result, Turnbull seems unlikely to achieve either. The consensus among those analyzing the election results, the commentariat, and the social media, was that the outcome would be a narrow LNP majority.

I’ll not try to best guess the long-term political outcome, and instead ask what has brought about this situation.

While acknowledging that multiple factors bring about any election outcome, I propose that this time five significant factors have been in play: the Turnbull character; Medicare; Inequality; Turnbull reversals on the NBN, marriage equality, global warming and the republic; and insensitivity towards the Coalition’s constituency.

The Turnbull character
We don’t have to go far back to gain insight into Turnbull’s character. Annabel Crabb’s 2009 Quarterly Essay: Stop at Nothing: The Life and Adventures of Malcolm Turnbull spells it out in detail. You can read a summary of it in her article on the ABC website, updated on 16 May this year. This is what we wrote about it on The Political Sword in June 2009.

Against the background of Turnbull’s successful involvement in the Spycatcher case and his representation of Kerry Packer (the Goanna) in the Costigan Royal Commission into the Federated Ship Painters and Dockers Union, Crabb writes: “From the Costigan affair we can draw some preliminary conclusions about the young Turnbull. The first is that he has no regard for orthodoxy…” and “This refusal to ‘play by the rules’ is something of a lifelong pattern for Turnbull; it explains much of his success, but also accounts for the worst of his reputation.”…“The second thing we learn from Costigan is that violent tactical methods are not just something to which Turnbull will contemplate turning if sufficiently provoked. It’s not enough to say that Turnbull is prepared to play hardball. He prefers to play hardball – that’s the point. It is impossible to rid oneself entirely of the suspicion that Turnbull enjoys the intrigue – the hurling of grenades…”

Turnbull is a risk taker. He backs his own judgement. He gambles on being right. Often he is, sometimes not. His gamble this year to take on Tony Abbott by challenging his leadership paid off immediately with a convincing win in the Liberal party room, high popularity in the electorate, and improving polls. But his gamble a couple of months ago to call a double dissolution election predicated on the urgent necessity to restore the Australian Building and Construction Commission, if needs be by a joint sitting of parliament, has ended in disaster for him. It was a charade from the beginning, hardly mentioned in the campaign, and now unlikely ever to pass a joint sitting. This episode was vintage Turnbull risk taking, foolish risk taking.

It is understandable that the relief felt by the electorate when he replaced the calamitous Abbott has dimmed memories of Turnbull in his earlier days as opposition leader and minister for communications. Then he performed as he is performing even now: incautious, indecisive yet at times precipitous in decision-making, inadequately prepared, and lacking in due diligence.

Image thanks to David Caune via Twitter

Image thanks to David Caune via Twitter

You will all remember ‘Ute-gate’, where Turnbull was conned by a Liberal mole in Treasury, Godwin Grech, into believing the contents of what turned out to be a fake email that attempted to implicate PM Rudd and Treasurer Swan in an underhand deal in which a car dealer gave Rudd a ute for campaigning in return for OzCar favours. Turnbull swallowed the story, hook, line and sinker, as did Murdoch journalist Steve Lewis. Turnbull, the accomplished barrister, had failed in due diligence, as had his collaborator, Eric Abetz.

In case Turnbull’s recent prime ministerial aura, such a contrast to Abbott’s embarrassing ineptitude, has erased the memory of his earlier days as Liberal leader, go to the archive of The Political Sword and re-read: The old rusty ute, After Turnbull, What will Turnbull do now?, The Turnbull endgame, Turnbull in a China shop, Malcolm Turnbull’s intelligence, What is Malcolm Turnbull up to?, The Turnbull Twist, and Why does Malcolm Turnbull make so many mistakes?.

It would take you hours to do so, and there are still more, but they will be sufficient to remind you that Malcolm Turnbull has not changed. What was written then could be written now. The context has changed, but the man has not. He creates his own disasters; he makes the going tough for himself.

PM Turnbull is the same man who over the years has been a big risk-taker but has lacked judgement and has eschewed due diligence. His successes have been overshadowed by his failures. We are now witnessing his most spectacular failure, one that will affect us all as politics in this nation enters an uncertain phase where governance will be very difficult.

Medicare
In an angry, ungracious speech on election night, Turnbull blasted Labor for its ‘Mediscare’ campaign: “Today, as voters went to the polls, as you would have seen in the press, there were text messages being sent to thousands of people across Australia saying that Medicare was about to be privatised by the Liberal Party. The SMS message said it came from Medicare – an extraordinary act of dishonesty. No doubt the police will investigate. But this is, but this is the scale of the challenge we faced. And regrettably more than a few people were misled … But the circumstances of Australia cannot be changed by a lying campaign from the Labor Party.”

Turnbull sought to label the Labor campaign as the prime cause of his loss of support. The following day Scott Morrison was equally adamant; he was arrogantly unwilling to concede any fault on the Coalition side.

The next day though Turnbull was prepared to acknowledge that ‘Mediscare’ worked because the seeds of the scare ‘had fallen on fertile ground’, no doubt a reference to the suspicion created in the electorate by the Coalition’s many recent attacks on Medicare: the threat of a GP co-payment, the freezing of GP rebates until 2020, the threat to remove bulk billing inducements for imaging and pathology tests, and the increased co-payment for pharmaceuticals. Turnbull ought not to have been surprised that voters were susceptible to believing Labor’s assertion that the Coalition intended to privatize Medicare. The Coalition’s past and more recent attitude toward Medicare rightly made them suspicious. Turnbull’s denials and voluble reassurances were simply not believed.

’Mediscare’ was a significant factor in Turnbull’s humiliation at the polls, but not the only one. He reaped what he had so abundantly sown.

Inequality
Although the word was seldom uttered, the people were aware of the widening gap between those at the top and those languishing at the bottom. They spoke of feeling they were being left behind, struggling with cost of living pressures, and finding it increasingly difficult to make ends meet. Many were finding it hard to get a satisfying job. Their feelings of abandonment and resentment were accentuated by Turnbull’s continual reminders that there was “never a better time to be an Australian!”, something they were not themselves experiencing.

Voters needed no more than their contemporary experience to feel left behind, but then along came the Turnbull/Morrison move to give $48 billion of tax relief to businesses, extending over the decade to the big banks and multinationals, the very ones whom we all know do not pay their fair share of tax. The tax rorters were being offered a generous tax break!

The Coalition mantra of ‘Jobs and Growth’, on which they based their much-vaunted ‘economic plan’ was yet another example of the Coalition’s faith in ‘supply-side’ economics, despite it having been discredited repeatedly. The term ‘trickle-down’ began to be mentioned by commentators and included in questions to politicians, and even the long-debunked ‘Laffer curve’ was mentioned in a question on Q&A. The public became aware of the fraud they were being offered by the Coalition with their monotonously repeated and meaningless three-word slogan: ‘Jobs and Growth’.

I wrote in April that inequality would be a hot button election issue and it was – not in overt terms, but simmering angrily below the surface and significantly influencing voters’ preferences. Will the Coalition heed their desire for a fairer deal?

The Turnbull reversals
Countless comments have been made about Turnbull’s reversals of position. There has been widespread disappointment at his stance toward crucial issues. They are familiar to you all.

The NBN
In his attempt to avoid Abbott’s ‘demolish the NBN’ instruction, he has given us a hybrid multi-technology fibre to the node (FTTN) mishmash with speeds slower than are needed by a nation competing on the world scene, far too slow in rollout, and possibly more expensive than Labor’s superior fibre to the premises (FTTP) model, which Turnbull ridiculed so sarcastically. For such a tech head to oversee the introduction of this inferior technology is disgraceful. People are appalled, angry, and disappointed, especially those in rural areas, who if they can get connected to the Internet at all, suffer debilitating buffering.

Marriage equality
Marriage equality is the focus of another Turnbull reversal. In an earlier life he was strongly in favour and insistent that it should be resolved with a conscience vote of the parliament. But he reneged on that to placate the hard right conservatives who want a plebiscite, designed by Abbott to delay the debate, allow it to be debased by the bigots, and eventually to be defeated. Another disappointing Turnbull reversal!

Global warming
After all the talk in his early days: “I will not lead a party that is not as committed to effective action on climate change as I am”, he has disappointed the climate lobby by insisting that the Coalition’s paltry ‘Direct Action Plan’ is all that we need, and that it is working. All his devotion to an emissions trading scheme has evaporated, simply to appease the climate skeptics in his ranks and thereby secure his leadership. It is to many his most profound, his most disturbing and disappointing reversal of principle.

The Republic
The cause to which Turnbull devoted himself so fully for so long no longer attracts his interest. He has discarded any intention to move soon on this, much to the chagrin of those who feel it is high time Australia became a republic. While it was unlikely to be a vote changer; it did confirm in many minds Turnbull’s willingness to sacrifice his principles for personal advantage.

Insensitivity to the Coalition’s constituency
Whatever else a politician does, he needs to avoid alienating the people who support him financially and who vote for him.

Turnbull has managed to alienate a large group of wealthy superannuants by proposing that changes to superannuation be made that will disadvantage them, and by the prospect of the changes being retrospective. In some analyses of the poor result for the Coalition at this election, anger over proposed changes to superannuation among his constituency have been cited as a powerful force that tuned away Coalition voters.

Another group that has been alienated are the hard right conservative clique that is currently agitating for more say, more clout, and more recognition, led by Tea Party admirer Cory Bernardi who wants to establish a group like GetUp, but right leaning, one that can represent conservative views. Because Turnbull is a moderate with progressive views, this group may cause him more grief than his traditional opponents as he tries to keep conservatives and ‘small l’ Liberals together. The conservatives are hostile and dangerous, still angry that he toppled their patron, Abbott. They paint Turnbull as a fraud, a traitor to their cause. Writing in The Australian, right-wing Sky News commentator Graham (Richo) Richardson’s assessment is: “Turnbull is a traitor to his class and constituents.” His opponents will erode his standing in the party through internal sabotage. The sharks are already circling! We saw it when Kevin Rudd sabotaged Julia Gillard; it can happen again. It is more debilitating than external attacks.

In an attempt to reverse the alienation among Muslims that Abbott provoked with his anti-Muslim attitude and his obsessive focus on terror threats, Turnbull held out the hand of friendship, even to the point of inviting several prominent Muslims, including a radical sheik, to an Iftar dinner that he hosted for Ramadan. Whilst applauded by some, it has further alienated those who follow Pauline Hanson, who has now added to her anti-Asian stance an equally aggressive anti-Muslim one.

Image from thenewdaily.com.au

Image from thenewdaily.com.au

When the Coalition gets around to analysing why it has done so poorly at this election, coming close to defeat, expect it to include pointed reference to the alienation of important parts of the Coalition’s constituency, with accusatory fingers pointing firmly at Turnbull.

You are bound to read about reasons for the diminishment of Turnbull’s prestige and standing, other than those cited above. Tell us about them in a comment.

How has it come to this? PM Turnbull has ‘won’ but is apprehensive; Opposition Leader Shorten hasn’t, but is smiling?

Whatever other factors were in play during the election, prominent factors were: Turnbull as an incautious risk-taker; the Medicare bogey; the unfairness and inequality felt by those on Struggle Street angrily watching the top end of town get the rewards; the reversal of deeply held Turnbull principles on the NBN, marriage equality, global warming and the republic, all sacrificed at the altar of self interest; and insensitivity towards the Coalition’s natural constituency. All were recipes for failure, and at worst, political disaster. Time will tell how potent they were.

What do you think?

What do you believe are the most significant factors in the Coalition’s poor showing?

This article was originally published on The Political Sword

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29 comments

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  1. Freethinker

    IMO the last nail in the coffin was when just close to the election the Coalition has unveiled a $2.3 billion welfare crackdown
    I do not not if it an arrogance or that they are blind by their hard line ideology that does not allow them to see clear.

  2. helvityni

    No, he has not changed, we have just had a bit more time to get to know the real man. He might be a clever lawyer, but lacks emotional intelligence and judgement.

  3. wam

    8 weeks of plans but no more than ‘trust me we have plans’. 8 weeks of jobs but no details ie no penalty rates more jobs is not believable and the clincher was his proposed medicare outsourcing.
    in my case on wed 22 i got a letter telling me that my diabetes plan would no longer be accepted for podiatry and i would pay $69.

    Not the gap and the business deal with medicare but full cost and i deal with medicare.

    My spin was the business didn’t trust the medicare privatised payment system so left that part of medicare to us. Put simply we pay full price instantly out of our bank to the business then we wait till medicare put some of it back.
    When talking to other diabetics, a more sinister spin sprang to mind. They were paying the ‘gap’ and the businesses were dealing with medicare.
    The practices were charging a couple of dollars MORE than the gap. Why??? Perhaps to cater for the ‘cut’ the private company would take for profit???
    My explanation had no effect on the conservative ladies because their podiatrist bulk-billed. End of story!!!!!!

  4. David

    It is obvious he enjoys some of the same personality traits of the political psychopaths who seek power and control. The worry for us is the fact that the LNP, MSM, the USA, and Nato (the corporation, not NATO) are leading us to a nuclear world war. It has been delayed twice already, once in Ukraine, and the second time in Syria. Now I am beginning to wonder if Australia is the testing ground for political policies and solutions which can be implemented? Gun Control legislation was the first hint of this…

  5. Möbius Ecko

    Heard something very scary this morning.

    The Nationals are demanding a greater role in government including and extra senior portfolio. They are asking for Small Business and Communications, and the scary bit. they want control over the ABC.

  6. Kaye Lee

    Under the Australian Broadcasting Corporation Act 1983, the ABC Board is bound to “maintain the independence and integrity of the Corporation”.

    The Nationals made their support of Malcolm dependent on promises to stick with the marriage plebiscite and to not introduce an ETS (among other things). With their comparative success at this election, and with a newly empowered Barnaby in charge, they are going to ask for the moon this time. Whilst I have empathy for Australians who live in rural, regional and remote areas, they are significantly over-represented in Parliament when 89% of the population live in urban areas.

  7. Freethinker

    I agree Kaye, IMO the Greens should have more seats in the HoR than the Nationals.

  8. paulwalter

    The protectionist Nats won’t get the ABC. The ABC belongs to the dominant neolib wing of the coalition and what ownership the Nats have it already, derives from their membership of the conservative movement.

    I think it is a red herring. The populist conservatives need the neolibs and the neolibs need the doctrinal conservatives for their noise, which distracts the public from realising the true aims of the neolib wing. Nothing makes you sick..

  9. helvityni

    paulwalter, it’s not my ABC anymore, I don’t want any Murdoch contaminated broadcasters…

    Kaye, Barnaby can have his Moon, Mal has already got the Sun…

  10. cornlegend

    Even though the voting isn’t complete it is good to see Labor are already starting the discussion and post mortem in preparation in case this Government can’t go full term.
    Informal meetings to discuss all this are already being implemented and I will be attending one next weekend
    Some issues, even with an incomplete vote that I will be raising will be,
    1 Greater inclusion of Left MPs in the Shadow Portfolios based on 2016 results.
    2 The issues that came into play in South Australia where both Labor and the Greens lost ground, -4% and -2.34% respectively.
    3 The failure of both Labor and the Greens in Tony Abbotts seat of Warringah again, where Labor and the Greens lost -4.75% and -3.73% While NXT gained +6.48%
    4 The issue of Labor preferencing, and consideration to much more meaningful discussion with NXT, if it continues to grow at the pace of 2016 and whether Labors 4 million plus first preferece votes could grow a supportive party if preferenced second nationally
    5 Labors high preferencing of Greens.
    Concerns are that 25-30% of Greens preferences are continuing to flow to the LNP.
    This was an issue in 2013 “Figures produced by ABC election analyst Anthony Green support this view. They reveal that between 20% and 25% of Greens votes have always allocated second preference to the Liberal Party.”
    Currently close seats
    herbert 302 lead
    hindmarsh 348 ”
    Capricornia 148 ”
    cowan 467 ”
    Flynn 391 ”
    Forde 915 ”
    Gilmore 1460 ”
    And Rob Oakeshotts seat may well have stopped Turnbulls return if preferences had not leaked

    6 The ALP consider its preference strategy and look to other growing parties in preference to the Greens in these negotiations

    If anyone would like something brought to the table, whether I agree or not,and within reason, let me know and I will put it on my issues to be raised list

  11. ozibody

    Indeed, Mr. Turnbull has been a clever (smart) lawyer, as history clearly supports.

    History also clearly supports the fact that when law and politics are combined, most of truth and principle significantly decline !….. understatement! .

    Enter ‘right’ stage a smart lawyer and watch as governance goes sideways! ….. tugged by strings from all quarters! …. Senate anyone ??….. deals aplenty?? ….. The National Interest … let’s hope Labor can apply the ” Fairness Test ” all the way.

  12. Jack

    I liken the Libs to the characters in Hitchcocks movie Lifeboat. Though imagine being anywhere in confined space with Tony Abbott would be uncomfortable even terrifying. Great Pope drawing.

  13. Ian Sprocket Muncher Parfrey

    Dave Lindley and El-Rayo-X
    Talk To The Lawyer.

    “They do maneuvers at the border line
    Somebody’s eatin’ up some kind of thang
    And when you want to know the reason why
    I’m sorry sir….. there’s no reply

    You’re on a mission for the President
    You got to bury all the evidence
    You say you like it but you really don’t
    He said he’ll cover but you know he won’t

    You’re talking to the lawyer
    Professional liar
    Your better talk to the lawyer
    Professional liar”

    Yep. Sums up Truffles quite nicely.

  14. Bighead1883

    cornlegend July 11, 2016 at 9:01 am

    The now close to 100% conservatism push by MSM grates away continually on our national psyche Cornie

    The ABC is now clearly a conservative shill and FOX lite with lipgloss puff pieces and matching fashion accessories by the rich&powerful [aka Malcolm&Lucy} in matching inflatable sumo wrestling jackets
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CnC3toCUEAE3K8h.jpg

    The sheep are never going to know anything comrade but the Murdoch paddock being hand fed GMO corned content
    What hope have we when the IPA parachutes these children into safe seats of power
    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CnAV5hwVYAAZOxx.jpg

    Somehow the Left {Socialist} side of politics has to purchase more media to display the alternative to Imperialism`s Capitalistic Oligarchal domination of propaganda

    We`ve seen the Bernie Sanders and Jeremy Corbyn resurgence of Social Democracy eroded by constant RW neo-con propaganda

    We are what we collectively consume and armed with the logic of “a little knowledge is dangerous” I offer that the mix required be ownership of more alternate media
    The myriad of smaller social sites has kept and is keeping Social Democracy alive and kicking {Indie publications like AIMN etc]
    The internet of many things allows this creation,just as Youtube Facebook Snapchat etc were created so too a Social Democratic site could be

    So ends the ravings of a fool

  15. king1394

    Liberal voters expect a government that will protect their privileges .The Liberals continue to be the chosen party of the wealthy, the ‘upper class’, the establishment people in communities. The overall ideal of being, and being seen to be, prosperous and above the mob is strong in my locality.
    Handing out for the ALP at pre-poll, it amazed me how many old dears, including people who were clearly frail, made a bee-line for the Liberals, and often engaged in friendly conversation etc. These people cannot recognise that their pensions and medical care have been secured by Labor governments over the years. Also a large number of private school uniformed first time voters came in with parents, and again were clearly being instructed that the Liberal vote was part of who they are. ..
    Most revealing was that one of the senior local Liberals is well known here as a leader in the fight against a coal mine here. Typically, such people may be torn but the idea of changing their vote is beyond them.

  16. Pam

    Whatever we think will not change the fact that most of Australia is in for a rough ride for the next 3 years. Australia will rue the day they voted the coalition in again. This country and Austrlians are going to be destroyed by this facist mob and they don’t give a damn as long as they look after themselves and their rich mates. Even more scary is the fact that I do not think Labor will be able to fix the problems this government have and will create for all of us. Traditionly Liberal would make a mess and labor will come in and fix it, I seriously doubt they will be able to this time around.

  17. astra5

    Folks
    I thank you for your informative comments.

    While the last week was interesting as results aggregated, this week will be even more so as Turnbull tries to resolve the mess he has created.

    He will need to replace ministers who lost their seats, placate the Nationals who are demanding more influence, cope with the conservative clique in his party room, and their leader the calamitous Abbott, without giving them and him undue influence, decide which of his key legislation will fly in the new Senate, probably abandon the ABCC trigger because it won’t get past a joint sitting, and watch his back as his internal opponents look for an opportunity to shaft him or remove him.

    As this piece asserts, Turnbull is the architect of most of the trouble in which he finds himself. His problem solving and negotiating skills will be put to the test, every day, every painful week ahead.

  18. Michael Taylor

    Ad Astra, I can’t see him passing that test.

    In his short term of being PM he has displayed a tendency to pander to the hard right (in order to keep his job). It will not be tolerated by the new Senate and I should think too, the Australian voters. It will no doubt be reflected in the forthcoming opinion polls. I expect panic to set in early.

  19. Dan Rowden

    Turnbull has zero history of “success” as a political leader and shows no signs of capacity to turn that around. This Senate is going to rip off his head and shit down his neck. So to speak, in a somewhat scatological vein.

  20. Pauline

    That would be very messy Dan. Who would you get to be the cleaner?

  21. Dan Rowden

    Peter Dutton. He’s used to being up to his neck in it.

  22. astra5

    helvityni
    You are right, Malcolm Turnbull has not changed.

    Way back in December 2008, almost eight ears ago when he was the LOTO, long before his monumental mistake of trying to upend Kevin Rudd and Wayne Swan over the ‘Utegate’ affair, I wrote on ‘The Political Sword’ a piece titled: ‘Why does Malcolm Turnbull make so many mistakes?’ I’ve re-read it again today. It confirms that nothing has changed.

    The penultimate paragraph reads: “History may show that Turnbull’s biggest mistakes are underestimating Kevin Rudd and Wayne Swan, perpetually insisting they ‘simply don’t understand’ financial or economic matters, consistently condemning their every move, changing his tune whenever it suits him, flying in the face of competent economic intelligence, failing to exercise strong leadership, continuing to make political points at a time of unparalleled financial turmoil, and steadily losing credibility as he does, indulging in obfuscation and circumlocution while avoiding answering questions asked by interviewers, and most significantly failing to notice that the people are not behind him.”

    Sounds familiar doesn’t it? If you have time to read it, you might find this piece amusing, albeit an alarming reminder that indeed this man has not changed, and likely cannot. The urbane exterior hides a confused and confusing pseudo-politician, who is no more convincing now than he was in 2008. And he’s our PM!

    http://www.thepoliticalsword.com/post/Why-does-Malcolm-Turnbull-make-so-many-mistakes

  23. astra5

    Michael
    I agree. Past history suggest that he will again fail the test of leadership, economic competence, and most of all, political intelligence, which he seems to lack almost totally. His words sound fine, his exterior is stylish, he has a charming smile, but the essential ingredient, emotional and political intelligence, is missing.

    One reason John Howard survived so long, despite many missteps, was that, except at the very end, he had some understanding of the electorate, their aspirations and their feelings. Turnbull does not have Howard’s political intelligence. As mentioned above in a comment evoked by helvityni‘s comment, Turnbull’s behaviour is not new; we have the Turnbull of old making the same mistakes.

    I thought that Shaun Carney, writing in ‘The Conversation’ in ‘Enigmatic Turnbull creates his own misfortune and will be forever diminished by it’, put it well when he wrote this near the end: “To add further weight to his own saddlebags, Turnbull fashioned his election pitch around a “jobs and growth” mantra that had as its centrepiece a trickle-down economics policy of a A$50 billion company tax cut, distributed over the next ten years. It will also be remembered that the government was at first reluctant to put a dollar figure on the policy.

    “This policy – this approach, really – had no prospect of making an emotional connection with voters. What did it mean? It was, like the prime minister’s personal presentation, a retro piece, an echo of the 1980s when technocratic politicians were all the rage. It is far from a guaranteed success all these decades later, when disillusionment and cynicism about politics are high and widespread.”

    https://theconversation.com/enigmatic-turnbull-creates-his-own-misfortune-and-will-be-forever-diminished-by-it-61378

    Turnbull presses on, apparently oblivious of his lack of political intelligence.

  24. astra5

    Freethinker
    That is an impressive summary of the issues our re-elected PM will have to face. I have bookmarked the article so I can see how he goes!

  25. helvityni

    astra5, most illuminating stuff from the past (politicalsword), indeed our man Mal has not changed; too self-obsessed to think that men like Swan and Henry didn’t understand finances.

    He also hasn’t got Gillard’s negotiating skills.

  26. Florence nee Fedup

    Love the daughter of that photographer pointing out to Turnbull that she met Abbott when it was his desk. #auspol

  27. Alltherage

    Very late in writing this but for the record, one other potential reason for the narrow win:
    The electorate was told over and over again by Abbott and his band of wind instruments, that a party that knifed its leader, is not fit to govern, is chaotic, unstable and does not deserve our votes.
    So for those in the electorate that are neither rusted on Coalition or Labor supporters, that may have played a part.
    If only in forming an opinion that the Liberals are utter hypocrites and therefore not vote worthy. Some may even have believed the Abbott lesson and applied it, to the Coalition.

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