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Libspill – Does Dutton Have The Numbers?

Let’s be quite clear here: Thanks to a change introduced by Scott Morrison after he assumed the leadership, a two-thirds majority is required to trigger a spill in the Liberal Party. This only applies to leaders who win an election. One presumes that the Dutton supporters who voted for it weren’t expecting that it would apply to Morrison, but there you have it! It would be very, very difficult to force a spill and so Scottie seems to be safe because he’d have to have a clear majority turn against him.

However, remembering that almost nothing in politics is predictable these days, so picking the most unlikely thing and asserting that you’re almost positive that this will happen is a surefire way to seem like a genius. “No, no, Joe Hockey won’t win. Abbott will get up and then almost beat Julia Gillard in the election. Yes, yes, I know that Rudd is popular at the moment, but the polls will turn and then they’ll replace him with Julia, who’ll eventually lose to Tony. This will be followed by Britain leaving the EU, Trump being elected President… Yes, of the USA, and Boris Johnson will complete the trifecta of complete morons. Oh, sorry I forget to mention that Turnbull replaces Abbott and then gets replaced by Morrison… What do you mean I’m completely insane and you’ll give me good odds about any of those things happening?”

So given anything is possible, let’s take a quick look back at the Morrison versus Dutton contest.

Looking at a list of those MPs who are believed to have voted for Morrison, one sees that there are a number of departures. Julie Bishop, Malcolm Turnbull, Craig Laundy, Kelly O’Dwyer, Ann Sudmalis and Christopher Pyne all decided not contest the 2019 election. Mitch Fifield and Arthur Sinodinos were moved onto other jobs by Morrison, which may not have been the wisest move. Menzies and various other leaders used to move their rivals on to other roles, but I guess Slowmo didn’t feel that any threat was likely.

On the other side of the ledger, Dutton lost Tony Abbott and Jim Moylan. Moylan was returned to the Senate as a replacement for Arthur Sinodinos. Giving his first appointment was a replacement for Fiona Nash, he may be the only person to serve in two Parliaments while be pretty much unelectable having lost both attempts at winning a place at an election.

Anyway, working on the hypothetical assumption that all votes stayed the same, this would mean that the result of the spill would now be 37 to 39 in Dutton’s favour. Of course, this completely overlooks the fact that there were various new MPs elected and makes it a ridiculous hypothetical but, hey, hasn’t politics been littered with ridiculous analysis in the mainstream media? I mean, why should they have all the fun…

But, ridiculous or not, let’s consider the fact that a number of people only voted for Morrison because they were Turnbull supporters who thought that Dutton shouldn’t be rewarded. Ok, they still might harbour ill-feelings toward the Minister for Dark Arts, but that doesn’t mean that they wouldn’t jump ship once they realise that they’re on The Titanic.

And, of course, there is the possibility that another contender could emerge. While Angus Taylor may be thought to be electorally risky for all the reasons which I can’t list because I don’t have a good lawyer, the Liberals have plenty of ministers with the talent to match Morrison’s skills. Unfortunately, they seem sadly lacking at anyone who might be vaguely competent at anything apart from saying, “It’s Labor’s fault!” or “The Greens did it!” or “I had a dream about coal last night, and it loved me back…”

So will Christian Porter get to carry the party into the next election? Can Josh manage to make another video where he walks AND talks at the same time? Will Spud the Dud win by having ASIO detain all his opponents?

Yes, I know there’s the matter of the two thirds majority. But it’s a rather silly safeguard. I mean, if you called for a spill and it was only defeated by slightly over a third, you’d have to think that the leader was on borrowed time. From that point on, the question would be not can he hang on, but rather, “Do we have to go with the idiot who called the spill or do we actually have someone that the electorate’s never heard of so we can pretend we’re a whole new government?”

No, this is all just silly and I am sure that there won’t be a spill and that Morrison is safe. Given the past ten years, that means it’s 100% certain he won’t last the summer.


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  1. New England Cocky

    Sadly Rossleigh I agree with your analysis.

    The key to power in the Liarbral nat$misgovernment is incompetence because that makes the truly incompetent feel secure by comparing their own inadequate traits, lack of leadership potential and inability to dream for the good of their communities, with the public disasters of others covered up by the too large Parliamentary Public Relations Corps, but gossiped in the corridors by the political elite.

    Perhaps the optimal solution would be to require the public reporting of political donation over $1,000 per person or entity, with commercial entities disclosing the names of the individual directors to prevent multiple donations to overcome the threshold.

  2. Grumpy Geezer

    Yes, the new rule was that 2/3rds had to vote for a spill. But is 2/3rds required to overturn that rule? What about a newer rule that introduces new conditions – “In the event of….”? Only 50%+1 is then required.

    Herr Kipfler and his nodular acolytes will have been war-gaming over the break.

    You can hear him re-doing his arithmatic – 1 potato, 2 potato, 3 potato, 4….. (boom-tish)

    I have a slab riding on him having a go before the next election. Doesn’t mean i want Tuber to win, I just want the Tories to be set on fire and a moron like Dutton could be the match made in heaven.

  3. Matters Not

    Re – “Ann Sudmalis lost her seat to Labor”

    Don’t think so. Took her own political life as it were. Jumped without a parachute – which is not the Liberal thing to do.

    As for Dutton, no doubt he has buckets of dirt and a big spade.

  4. Peter

    Australia goes from one catastrophe to another. One thing is for sure though. Murdoch’s evil flying monkeys who take the form of the Liberal and National Party would rather see the country burn to the ground before accepting the science of man-made climate change.

  5. Geoff Andrews

    Grumpy, the Tubercolossus won’t challenge this year: he’s got to let Morrison floubder around in the cesspit a bit longer AND he knows the less time he has before the next election as PM means he’s still on honeymoon. Can’t afford a slab but I’ve got $5 on any time after May 2021.

    Found this reference on Dr Google: “Colossus is a mutant with the ability to transform his entire body into a form of “organic steel”, with properties similar to osmium but of still unknown composition.”

  6. Rossleigh

    Quite right, Matters Not. I’d forgotten that little drama. Since corrected.

  7. Peter O’Connor

    I’d love to be an optimist! Morrison is soon so on the nose electorally that he has to go. Maybe god speaks to him – either the media god or the one Happy Clappers swoon about… and he resigns. Or disparite Tories find enough common purpose to punt him. The mother of internecine stoushes breaks out and desperately divided rats come up with “who cares” as the new PM. Some “supporters” of the losing candidate can’t, in whatever they think is conscience, go with the new PM and so support a motion of no confidence in Parliament. The resultant election reverses the May 2019 result – albeit with a different PM from Bill Shorten – and The Fair Land of Oz can finally move out of the nightmare twilight zone and begin recovery. Huge agenda but early priorities – don’t shoot me if I leave out your favourite as there are sooooo many – but try these: a decent traumatised family returns home to Biloela to love, peace, recovery and security; remaining refugees are immediately rescued from their gulag and set on their long road to rehabilitation; on our behalf our Government kicks the shit out of climate change denial, simultaneously undertaking repair of the human and physical damage of this summer and returning Oz to stand proudly at the forefront of international action to address and reverse impacts and threats of climate change; urgently slam corporate rorts, patronage and welfare while simultaneously easing crushing pressures on the most desperate and underprivileged Aussies. Could the irreconcilable factions among the current shambolic regime hate each enough to open this door?? I’ll definitely put a slab on it in hope!! 🤞👊

  8. Phil

    My monies on Snorter the Rorter Porter. Even the most rancid right wingers in the Lying Nasty Party know that the party in un- electable with Shicklegruber AKA Peter Dutton at the Helm. The Snorter unlike Shicklegruber is an intelligent Nazi. He will move before the next election, he wants the job before it all implodes. Labor doesn’t know how lucky they were loose the last election, not only are the Tories going to take the heat from the fires excuse the pun, but the coming depression. All in all I think it will work out nice for Labor.

  9. Cool Pete

    Well, let’s not forget one thing, The Botty and The Potty are made of the same shit. The Botty did not experience a honeymoon with voters, and he was never preferred PM. The Potty is not popular outside Dickheadson, even if the idiots who watch Sky like him. Let us hope that if The Potty ever becomes leader, that rather than One Potato, Two Potato, Three Potato, Four, it’s Jodl (for two days after Hitler’s suicide), Tojo, Milosevic, Potty. All leaders who were executed or imprisoned for crimes against humanity. The Potty would be a Dick Tater.

  10. Cool Pete

    And something else about the Potty. The Nazis were not an unknown party in Germany in 1933; they had the majority of seats but not enough to form government, so they were in Coalition. Hindenburg reluctantly asked Hitler to form a government (he surrendered his Austrian citizenship in 1925 and wasn’t a German citizen until 1932). For all this talk about, “We’re a democratically elected government,” the Nazis were democratically elected to the Bundestag, too.

  11. Andrew Smith

    Divisions in the LNP (and Labor), encouraged and manipulated by News Corp media etc. leads to unstable govt. and grid lock in policy making e.g. climate change, while pushed to enact policy for niche interests e.g. tax cuts.

  12. Rowan Holgate

    Dutton has the numbers. He has everyone’s numbers as minister for home affairs. A dictator in waiting.
    As for Porter, he comes from a family of hard right manipulaters. Not to be trusted.

  13. Phil

    Yes despite the denials Herr Shicklegruber was indeed voted in. The Psyche reports from Nuremberg were quite interesting. A bit like our own Junta. Only Biggle’s AKA Herr Goering and Chucka AKA Speer the armaments minister had an exceptional i.q. most of the others were either imbeciles or on par with our own Shrieking Chimpanzee masquerading as a Prime Miniture. Scott Knows SFA Morrison. The new well not so old porky pie being peddled is the Nazi’s were Socialists.

  14. Patagonian

    I bet some of those who jumped ship last year, who may have had some regrets after the LNP were returned to power are now VERY glad they followed their first instincts.

    Please not Porter. Anyone but Porter. Of course if they think they’re going to lose the next election matter what, they’ll give the job to Marise Payne.

    On another topic, I see Susssssssssssssssssssssan Ley, our invisible Environment Minister, has been tweeting – or should that be twittering, or perhaps wittering on – about the wonderful people trying to save injured koalas. Apart from that and a couple of tweets about hay, she remains firmly in her hollow log.

    How disgraceful can you get, seeking reflected glory from those that have to go home each night with the anguished cries of horribly injured wildlife echoing in their heads?

  15. wam

    A second good giggle for a saturday.
    Dutton is a recognised successful minister
    He is, at absolute best, a st john or, perhaps, a heseltine but he is no fraser nor a major
    Far more importantly scmmo is no one dimensional rabbott nor is he a claytons emissions trading poll loser..
    The decision to stand against scummo has no grounds and he will make sure the error of holidays is not repeated.
    When greta’s heat does affect internal polling scummo will find a way for god to command the lnp to act.
    I love internal polling. In 2010 gillard should have had a 4 seat majority. Soloman and Longman were certain labor so rubbish candidates were selected but within a couple of days of the ballot a disaster of caravan proportions hit townesville and darwin, suddenly, the lib no hopers won.
    Fortunately Windsor and Oakeschott appeared and you know the rest.
    people fought to get on the titanic and albo is no iceberg.

  16. paul walter

    It is becoming deeply tragic.

    The country goes to hell in a handbasket because a few rich people cant let go of a few bob in tax and because lunatics are determined to take the country back to the nineteen thirties.

    Morrison cares not a jot about the disaster, except as an opportunity to consolidate mindless authoritarianism divorced from any relation to truth fact or reality, on a once most fortunate of nations.

    I can’t laugh, most all after the filth dished up as interview on the pathetic ABC this morning.

    It is one thing to tell a lie, but to relentlessly, energetically persevere in the repetition of sinister lies months after they have been factually refuted is beyond the gateways of madness.

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