>A very interesting QANDA tonight – one that was at first interesting because of a decent policy discussion on foreign matters, but one that got very interesting about half way through when talk turned to Kevin Rudd and his dumping of the CPRS.
He admitted he was wrong to do it – “I think my judgement on that was wrong”, he said. This was great to hear – refreshing.
But he then let go some information about Cabinet discussions at the time – that some wanted him to press on, some wanted to delay it (as happened) and others wanted it dumped altogether:
“You had some folk who wanted to get rid of it altogether, that is kill the ETS as a future proposition for the country. I couldn’t abide that”.
When asked if it was Swan and Gillard who wanted him to dump it he came back with “there was a diversity of opinion” line.
When talk turned to factional thugs and asked if some are in caucus he says “It’s an interesting and diverse caucus”.
The whole tenor of the show turned with his statements. It went from being an interesting discussion on foreign policy to probably front page news on domestic issues. It will be seen as his slapping back at Gillard. It will be blown up as a quasi attack on her leadership.
In reality, other than his admission of error on the CPRS, little new has been learned – perhaps the fact that some in Cabinet wanted to dump the plan completely. At a guess you’d say Martin Ferguson was in that camp. Gillard we already know was in favour of delay, Swan too. We’ve known that since last August. Sure Rudd confirms it, but that doesn’t make it new.
So what did we learn that was new? Errr not much really, just that a politician spoke the truth. It’s a shame such a thing is a shock to both the public, the media and the politicians themselves (no doubt ALP mobile phone were ringing madly during the show).
Gillard, regardless of what she advocated in the past, has said she has changed her mind and is now pushing for a carbon price. And just quietly she is pushing for it a hell of a lot harder than Rudd ever did. She at least is talking about the economics of the price – ie that prices would go up. Rudd was too invested in the whole greatest moral challenge riff.
So Rudd told the truth tonight and admitted he stuffed up, and that people in Cabinet were advising him to dump it. Why do it given he knows how it will be reported? Obviously he still thinks the leadership is there to be won. In Government it won’t happen – the deal with the independents pretty well kills much of a chance for change, and also the ALP just could not do it again – it’d be NSW ALP like suicide (ok, so given we are talking this ALP, let’s not count it out!).
Rudd you would think is looking ahead to a time when the ALP is in opposition and they turn back to him as some sort of return to a better time.
For mine, I liked the way Rudd talked tonight on QANDA, but I don’t forget that Annabel Crabb’s nickname of Ruddbot was well deserved. As PM he became monotone, and also failed to adequately stick up for the BER, the insulation program and the deficit (and other policies) in the face of a pile of bull from the opposition and the media.
Many from the left side of politics while watching QANDA tonight seemed to get a bit dewy eyed on the Twitter stream, and seem to have forgotten his faults. He is absolutely right to say he was responsible for dumping the CPRS. As soon as a leader is shifting blame to other members of Cabinet for a decision being made he or she is no longer the leader. This guff about Gillard and Swan advising him to dump it would all be for nought if he had been a leader who said, sorry, you’re wrong, nope we’re going for it – I’m off to the GG and we’re calling a Double Dissolution.
He didn’t and he admits now his error in pursuing the policy he did. Bravo, well said. But let’s not make it into more than it is (the media will do that job for us, nicely).
UPDATE The Newspoll out this morning has the LNP up 55 to the ALP’s 45. Boom! So in the Last three Newspolls We’re had the ALP lose 4 per cent, gain 5 per cent and lose 6 per cent. A little bit too volatile for reality. Best at this time to look at the average of the polls – go over to Possum and let his Pollytrend lead the way. ALP are definitely behind, but 45? Bit low I think.
Let’s continue our look at how The Oz treats its poll – see if you can pick the Newspoll that was good for the ALP: