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So Abbott survived – for the moment

Interesting day. The spill motion was put and was defeated. 61 against and 39 for the motion. That’s 39% of the sitting members would like a new leader.  That means just twelve people between Abbott as Prime Minister and bye-bye Abbott.

Interesting Tweet, really. 71 -13 seems like a much better margin to me, but what would I know?

Ouch. More from Mark Kenny in the Sydney Morning Herald:

 But there’s an even more damaging number to consider if you’re Abbott. Assuming his 41-strong ministry and party whips held together and voted in favour of the leadership (as Abbott and his backers demanded they must by convention), then near enough to 60 per cent of his backbench has abandoned him.

I suppose if you are Prime Minister, the best idea is to have a large ministry and lots of party whips! What does it take to ensure OUR representatives can vote according to their conscience or OUR instruction and not the dictates of “convention”?

There was the art gallery invite, the tactical move of calling the meeting a day early to minimise communication before the spill and on top of that, misleading speeches (only the voters can “hire and fire”) and ideas that could be considered bribes (submarines, anyone?).

This looks to me very much like a testing of the waters. For both sides. The next time this spill is moved, expect a few ministerial resignations, perhaps, before the ballot. Mike Fitzsimon quoted an unknown source today, “Apparently, it’s hard to change horseman in mid-apocalypse.”

Convention ruled this time. I don’t believe it will a second time. The unfettered have declared their hands giving an indication of success.

The problem is there are forty-one people locked to a particular vote, by convention, who would lose their handy extra remuneration if the ballot returned the incumbent and they had voted against said incumbent – they would, as we know, be excommunicated from the ministry poste-haste. All of those forty-one want to be DAMN sure of the outcome before they take a hefty pay cut. If the outcome is a new prime minister, there are also rewards to be had; promotions to the ministry.

Oh the games our politicians play – with our money.

As for the church service preceding the proceedings?

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4 comments on “So Abbott survived – for the moment

  1. You’re right, you’re right, you’re right. Of course the Prime Ministership is a ‘gift of the party’. But what if most Austraians think they’re voting for the PM? Scary thought, hey?

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  2. The repeated statements by the PM that it’s the people who hired him and are the only ones who can fire him marks him out as a radical, not a conservative. Conservatism demands that we hold on to valued and cherished traditions against unnecessary change. The Westminster system of government is supposed to be one of them, but instead is completely subverted in favour of some presidential style which is in fact completely alien to us.

    Liked by 1 person

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