Friday, December 01, 2006
The SMH’s Phillip Coorey reports:
Kim Beazley’s gamble in calling a Labor leadership ballot on Monday could backfire following a surge of support last night towards challengers Kevin Rudd and Julia Gillard.
Word out of Canberra as early as mid-afternoon suggested Beazley might jump before he’s pushed. Unlikely; Beazley isn’t a fighter by nature, but it’s difficult to imagine even him surrendering under these circumstances. Further from Coorey:
The Sydney frontbencher and Beazley backer Tanya Plibersek attacked the plot against Mr Beazley, which was led by former Mark Latham supporters including Joel Fitzgibbon and Simon Crean.
“I’m frankly just appalled at the behaviour of the people who’ve brought this on,” she told the Herald.
“They are the same geniuses who gave us Mark Latham. They’re not smart, they’re not that intelligent. They are just bitter has-beens who are infuriated by their own lack of relevance in the party or in public. Not one of them has landed a blow on the Howard Government.”
As opposed to all the blows Plibersek has landed. Here’s Tanya after the 2004 election:
I think [Latham] ran a fantastic campaign, really, and I was going around to polling booths yesterday and I can tell you that the people who watched politics, the people who are interested, are very, very positive about Mark.
Except for Tanya, who a few months later said:
I didn’t vote for him and as it turns out neither did the Australian people. I think it’s plain that it was a mistake, that Mark was never really ready for the top job.
Our planet will be molten (or ice-coated) before Plibersek herself is ready for the top job. The Telegraph’s view: Beazley is toast. More from Christopher Pearson, Matt Price, Samantha Maiden, and those chuckleheads at the Age.
COLUMN PUBLISHED WHERE IT SHOULD BE
Latest Daily Telegraph column is here. Speaking of the Telegraph, I’ve now been working there for two weeks following a six-year absence.
First day, everyone from security guards to the CEO dropped by my desk to welcome me back. This was unexpected and very touching. It’s good to be home.