A long parliament?

Suppose that the delusionists can manage to force a party meeting tomorrow, and move a spill motion which will surely succeed. Then presumably, even if Hockey gets up, the Libs will kill the ETS deal. At this point, it makes sense for Labor to want a double dissolution. More it makes sense for them to keep Parliament sitting as long as possible to get extra triggers. Obviously the Reps is no problem. For the Senate, the Libs presumably need their votes + 2 more to pass a motion to adjourn. So, if Labor can keep Xenophon and the Greens onside, which would make sense for them in a lot of ways, they can keep Parliament sitting for another couple of weeks while the Libs tear each other apart. Any thoughts on the practicality of this?

43 thoughts on “A long parliament?

  1. Fran, you said:

    That said, a Christmas election is a bad time to have one and January is too hot in many places. The better option would be to negotiate with the Greens wait until February, and start the whole road show again for a March election, after which the last thing in the minds of most of the punters will be the long hot summer of drought and bushfire — a perfect storm

    My understanding is that once the DD gun is loaded, it can be kept in a safe place, doesn’t have to be used immediately, so a March DD election is still possible.

    All of this speculation is a lot of fun for those of us who watch Aus politics. But I cannot see a safe way out of this spot for the Liberals. Whatever they choose, it’s lose. Turnbull can’t campaign with a hostile backbench like that, and Abbott doesn’t realise just how unpopular he really is. Hockey will just be Turnbull-lite, how can he reconcile their climate positioning? Can anyone?

    Not good for democracy, whatever happens.

    Certainly there’s a building case for a DD election, to allow the opposition to sort themselves out. I don’t think there’d be much or any backlash against Rudd for this. It would be murder.

  2. Antony Green has got a good analysis of the election options, and the constraints placed by the constitution. In summary,

    1. Rudd can call a Reps election anytime, but a half senate election can’t before next August. He won’t want a separate Senate election.

    2. Rudd can have a DD anytime he likes if he had the trigger, but if he goes before the second half of next year his second term will effectively be cut by one year, again assuming he won’t want a separate half senate election.

  3. @Alice

    Alice, is that the swimming pool next to Lunar Park with the great view across the Harbour + cafe? I miss the lap-nazis there! Even the slow lane copped it from time to time.

    Anyway, just to show how deep the Lib – Public Service ties were/are, thanks to a policy of private style contracts for the heads and turning a blind eye to tragic wannabes: check out Michelle Grattan’s article on Godwin!
    (Damn! I mentioned nazis and Godwin in the same post – do I win the argument, or lose it? 🙂 )

  4. @Donald Oats
    nahhh….not that one but I know the lap nazis there – lot of lap nazis. Too many in those lanes Don (way too many – you would have to pick your time). No Im close to the Warringah aquatic centre but where I go is a private school pool and bliss its deserted at 7.30am except for a mad lot of people like me – a few diehards who do all the surf / oceans swims and masters stuff – and a long time coach who cant give it up either. Ive done a few ocean swims but I dont like the mad crush elbows in the head random surfrages and the scary business of no black line…deep blue blur underneath ewww…eww eww

  5. Labor doesn’t want a bunch of greens and independents in the senate. It would much prefer a reactionary coalition rabble. So it would much prefer a series of half senate elections to a double dissolution.

    If Turnbull can’t keep (make?) the Lib brand intellectually respectable and a double dissolution on climate change is presented to Rudd, I doubt that he would take the opportunity.

  6. Labor doesn’t want a bunch of greens and independents in the senate. It would much prefer a reactionary coalition rabble.

    Nonsense. Labor, like any government, would prefer to control the Senate by itself. But failing that, it would prefer some party it can reliably deal with to get its legislation passed.

    At the moment, the Coalition is clearly not such a party. Nor is a combination of the Greens and Independents with wildly divergent ideological views. Maybe, in the next Senate, the Greens will be such a party. But that remains to be seen.

    Labor is unlikely to go for a DD simply because that is likely to be less electorally advantageous to it than a regular half-senate election, as Anthony Green has shown.

  7. Labor should have cut some sort of a deal with Bob Brown to pass the watered down legislation. Some libs may vote for it yet (Troeth at least?) but maybe not seven.

  8. Now that the football season is over, JQ’s suggestion acheives an unexpected significance as to the all too pervasive problem of boredom during that hiatus before sane folk are inexorably roped into the perennial all-pervasive Great X mass scam (bah humbug)

  9. Sorry Tim (#34), but the preferencing of Fielding over the Greens was not an aberration explicable by a Conroy brain explosion. It was an illustration of Labor’s antipathy to conviction politics – particularly of the kind that could erode its left flank.

  10. Pr Q@#9 said:

    But for the Liberal party in general, it wasn’t an issue.

    The analogy of ETS with Medicare is that the LP was divided, with its own base (private health carer interests and rugged individualist ideologues) being at odds with the mainstream public and more or less expert economic analysis. But, as I observed, the LP “did not change leaders on that issue”. As of today they have not on the ETS.

    I predict that they will not.

    Pr Q said:

    It doesn’t do to get carried away, but if you look at the delusionist Liberal commentariat, I don’t think you see much support for the “tantrum” viewpoint. They are convinced this is when they finally win.

    The theory that this division will provoke a split in the Right-wing, reducing it to a UAP-like rump and rabble, is “getting carried away” alright.

    The analogy of the “delusionist Liberal commentariat” and tantrum-throwing child implies that the outbreak of temper only succeeds in eliciting an intervention with more adult supervision. Such as a resounding electoral defeat, which was going to happen anyway.

    TO characterise the delusionists, perhaps a better simile than temper-tantrum throwing child would be idiotic heir to the throne succumbing to some kind of petit mal. The danger of self-harm is amplified in the peril to the realm.

    Whats striking is how at odds the delusionists are with even the major interest groups in the Greenhouse Mafia such as Business Council, Coal Association and state ALPs. This is to add a loose cannon to the gun-deck of the delusionist man o’war.

    The evidence is that the “delusionist Liberal commentariat” have been very successful in rousing grass-roots opposition to any kind of CPRS. This is going by the dramatic drop-off in public support for CPRS amongst the conservative parts of the electorate, the hysteria over the leak of a few emails scattered with ill-chosen words by climate scientists and the flood of angry members of the public harassing LP officials.

    The delusionists blogitariat have had their first taste of power, they sense blood in the water and are in a feeding frenzy. Bolt has been particularly invidious in whipping up the delusionists into a lather of fury. Over the past few weeks the tone of his commentary has crossed the border from breathless hysteria and entered the state of rabid.

    I wish they would just stick to their strong suit which is frothing at the mouth Right-wingery on cultural matters, like me.

  11. I think the Labor Party has a good election slogan: “The Coalition, unfit to govern!”

    Roll on the double dissolution.

  12. Actually the consensus here seems to be more on a”hung” parliament rather than a “long” one. Hung in an activist sense, that is as with ropes, branches and things.

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