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Egg, faces

March 20th, 2010

As Mark Bahnisch observes, lots of members of the commentariat have egg on their faces after tonight’s state elections, particularly in SA where, at least by the ABC estimates, Labor’s parliamentary majority has barely been dented, despite a big swing. If it weren’t for the pre-election spin, these results would be pretty good for the Libs. But, as it was, Rudd’s decision to stick with the standard “we’re the underdogs” line, looks a lot smarter than the actions of those Liberal apparatchiks who were confidently predicting the end of Labor dominance at the state level.

The Tasmanian Libs, having received marginally more votes than Labor, will presumably get a chance to form a government. But that’s something of a Greek gift. The Greens are sure to demand a high price (starting presumably, with a swift heave overboard for Gunns’ current management and what’s left of their plans for a pulp mill). And in the two-party preferred terms relevant for a Federal election, the result looks awful, with Labor and the Greens getting a combined vote of nearly 60 per cent.

Given the extent to which Abbott’s bogus “authenticity” campaign relies on momentum, this could be a big problem for him. Or maybe not. Despite the Libs pre-election spin, tonights votes had very little to do with Federal politics, and rightly so

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  1. paul walter
    March 23rd, 2010 at 21:16 | #1

    My heartfelt thanks for that Alice, I haven’t been spoken to so nicely since (looks at wristwatch) just after tea, when I obliged my neighbour by rooting thru my dry rubbish to retreive a new seasons football program from the discarded newspaper, that she wanted for a tipsters entry form..

  2. Jill Rush
    March 23rd, 2010 at 23:19 | #2

    The reason that the papers kept on printing the story of Michele, Rick and Mike was that it sold a lot of papers, everyone was talking about it and were shocked at every new revelation.

    There were plenty of reasons to vote Rann out including the deceptive manner he dealt with the Phillips attack, when he led the media to believe it was an awful political attack and these things are to be expected, and its not the first time.

    All of those in safe seats could vote against Labor without having to worry about whether it would really change the government – but it did make them feel better.

    Those in marginal seats however looked at recycled politicians who were nice people whose governments had done awful things. The voters in the marginals had the choice between awful and even worse. Vicki Chapman reminded people of how bad it could be and the Shadow treasurer confirmed people’s worst fears that the Liberals were not offering anything better because so much open space had to be sold to pay for the unbudgeted promises. Who knew what else.

    Of course it is ironic that in an election based around trust that Labor perpetrated a huge con on the people and are now busy trying to spin their way out of this claiming that it is not so bad and that all’s fair in love and politics. An ICAC is still off the agenda.

    In SA Isobel Redmond had the momentum but it stalled at the last minute because just like in NSW and Queensland the Opposition were unelectable. Tony Abbott is too. The Liberals aren’t so hot on the Apple Isle. They should look at themselves and try to be nicer people – they would stand a chance then.

  3. paul walter
    March 24th, 2010 at 00:00 | #3

    That’s a perceptive summary, Jill Rush.
    Are you from Adelaide?
    In some places people are starting to talk of a closer relationship with the Greens for the Libs, what a march they would steal for themselves.
    Pipe dream.
    But Abbot, Minchin and the die hards have to be given one more chance, with the coalition of the wilting. The last of the RSL/CWA brigade want to march out shouldering arms, after that any internal reform of structure and zietgiest would finally have a chance of standing up.
    You must know about Weatherill’s adventures too, by the sound.

  4. bill
    March 24th, 2010 at 18:39 | #4

    In SA Isobel Redmond had the momentum but it stalled at the last minute because just like in NSW and Queensland the Opposition were unelectable. Tony Abbott is too.

    On the last point I certainly hope so!

    But I cringe everytime I hear the words ‘the momentum’ and suspect someone is trying to sell me something, not least because the Advertiser and Independent Weekly went into overdrive trying to convince us it was true. Just as they’ll doubtlessly do with Abbott.

    So why wasn’t it true Because the momentum stalled? Another world-of-physics – sciencey – metaphor, meaning what? Because the Liberals are ‘unelectable’? Again, what does that mean? ‘We loved them but then realised we couldn’t actually vote for them’?… Hmmm… quite the tabloid tragedy!

    How about the Liberals were unelectable throughout – because the Chantelois saga was their only real card. The pundits talked themselves into a golden dream of their candidate’s ascension – to be closely followed by its Federal sequel (ah, sweet ecstasy!)- but it never was happening, so it never did happen. When the local Tory media try to convince me of something because ‘it’s the vibe’, I start checking my pockets, to mangle a metaphor!

  5. Alice
    March 24th, 2010 at 18:41 | #5

    @paul walter
    And now Minchin is going….one fruit loop down…how many to go?

  6. paul walter
    March 25th, 2010 at 03:13 | #6

    That’s not a very nice thing to say about Nicholas, Alice.
    I think we have the explanation now, for such a weak performance from Abbot the other day, he knew or sensed Minchin was stuffed and on his way.
    Either that or Abbot’s poor effort was enough to break Minchin’s heart, on top of his other recent problems.
    Think about it also, that his SA factional ally Isobel Redmond almost lead the SA Libs out of the wilderness acouple of nights later.
    Now we all know how unpalatable an election night is when the people you support are denied and pollies you hate and fear and policies that offend you are continued or commenced.

  7. Alice
    March 25th, 2010 at 19:05 | #7

    @paul walter
    As I have said before Paul – you are too kind. You even went through the waste for a neighbour looking for the racing sheet (or something similar).
    Id like to be your neighbour Paul rather much more than Mr Minchin’s neighbour – something tells me he wouldnt do the same for his neighbour.

  8. Alice
    March 25th, 2010 at 19:06 | #8

    @paul walter
    You couldnt possibly mean that a rat is jumping from a sinking ship could you Paul?

  9. Ian Gould
    March 25th, 2010 at 22:52 | #9

    Rationalist :
    Labor may have won the battle, but in the war of ideas the economic rationalists always win. This is true in the case of SA and Tasmania and in every election in the foreseeable future at state and federal level.

    I tend to suspect that most politicians given a choice between winning the war of ideas and winning elections, would choose the latter.

  10. Alice
    March 26th, 2010 at 18:55 | #10

    @Ian Gould
    Ian – Rationalists doesnt beleive that economic rationalists could be losing the debate and teh hearts and minds of voters out there. Therehas been an incredible amount of negative press lately on all sorts of bizarre behaviour against people in politics (both sides) who have supported Obama’s health care reform bill. They have had death threats, rocks thrown through their windows

    and its being put down to the lunatic “right wing” fringe.

    Shame Ratio. If you asked ten years ago or even five whether the right had lunatics on board the answer may have been no (they are economic rationalists). No they couldnt been losers…but hey guess what Ratio? The far right is under attack not by the “left”, but by the mainstream electorates.

    You have positioned yourself with the losers Ratio.

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