Rather than trouble themselves with the petty concerns of the lumpen proletariat, the Canberra elite carried off another spectacular day of navel gazing, as Julia Gillard once again called for a leadership ballot after a senior minister, Simon Crean, poked the hornets’ nest earlier today.
Even lefty Lenore of the Silly Moaning Herald can’t say much in Labor’s defence:
One thing the Labor Party is supposed to be good at organising is a political assassination. Even their opponents assumed that.
Before the Labor caucus even met on Thursday afternoon the Liberal Party had released an ad featuring the man who triggered the showdown – Simon Crean – bagging out Kevin Rudd, obviously preparing for the return of the former leader. The tag line… ”Labor, it’s a farce”.
After this debacle, with an election just six months away, the Rudd ”camp” must surely be folding their tents.
But the Liberals didn’t know the half of it. When the caucus met, the plotters found they didn’t even have a candidate. This wasn’t farce, it was a comedy horror show like Attack of the Killer Tomatoes.
Labor’s political dysfunction had reached levels unprecedented even for a party that has spent much of the last three years tearing itself asunder.
Its dysfunction was so profound it had to scramble on the floor of the House of Representatives to win crossbench support and avoid a no confidence motion – which would have precipitated an early election – all because of a leadership challenge that never happened.
It had to stare down the no confidence motion against the Prime Minister in the Parliament when everyone knew it was considering an internal no confidence motion against her in the caucus room just hours later.
The former leader Crean had to call for the leadership ballot before Rudd had agreed to be a candidate in order to try to sway some undecided votes because the party had been bogged in leadership dysfunction ever since the last showdown over a year ago.
Reversing the normal situation where the incumbent has to be blasted out of the job, in the modern ALP people apparently have to try to blast a challenger in.
This rabble would make a busload of pissed clowns look by comparison like the House of Lords.
An election cannot come soon enough. Time for the cross-benchers to pull the plug – finally.