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17 minutes for a speech is nothing for a eight month election campaign.


Rob Oakeshott got a lot of smirks from his 17 minute long speech. But here is the thing. No one turned off. We all sat there listening or watching if we were able to, to the whole cathartic moment.

Definitely cathartic for he, Tony Windsor and Bob Katter who had become the centre of much media focus.

The nation needed that moment I feel. It would have been a good way to finish off what had been edge of the seat political tension.

But the problem is the election did not end there. And the moment became the subject of humor.

What begin the very moment of the announcement was a renewed effort from the coalition to maintain the rage and with it their electioneering.  The government, still on testing the wobbly legs it managed to pull together was pushed by the coalition in constitutional test after constitutional test. A certain coalition MP attempted to rally the troops by telling them they are only one death away and therefore one by-election away from government.


The coalition took the opportunity of reloading the guns that were in the same position since the election campaign and firing salvo after salvo. The government, dodging the attack and getting used to its new legs slowly, returned fire.

And suddenly it was the neverending election.

Poll after poll was watched furiously for any sign of change. The arm wrestle continued with one side then another grudging giving and then regaining small numbers. 1 or a 2 percentage difference, no more.

Suddenly, prior to sitting for the new year, the coalition looked like it had scored a blow. It was then that it also began to take missteps.

Frictions in front of cameras turned to fractures in the cabinet.

The coalition that had been running at full power began to splutter and backfire. Once could have been forgiven. But a string of these and some woven together by what many see as a hidden agenda has cost them the gains they received in that first poll and the damage, while not deadly as such, is quite heavy.

The problem I see for both parties is now comes the hibernation period in the minds of the public. Parliament has to now compete with Dancing with the Stars and Australian Idol. As the nation prepares for the coming winter, they will cease to listen to the barrage of words.

Oh sure, it will come on their TV at dinner time, but they wont care. It will be on the front pages of the newspaper, but many will turn there papers over and will be reading the sport section first anyway.

And while both sides continue to play elections, the public will tune out.

Now what does that mean? Well I feel it can be bad for the coalition if they continue their current tactics. They need to be seen as doing things and not talking about things. People have been hearing talk since July last year. Meanwhile, the government is in a better position of doing things. And while no one will care about what the pollies maybe saying, they will remember when things get done.

Further, the more Julia Gillard and the government are able to make happen, the more they begin to understand their new legs better.

Of course these legs are not theirs alone and the opposition can and has used them themselves. But it seems to me that the more they get to bridging whatever differences the coalition and independents have, some coalition MP decides to release a statement. And as they do it makes it appear that either Tony Abbott is behind the said statement OR he can not handle his own people.

Coalition need to rethink and regroup here. It has some policy issues it needs to clarify or run away from.

Question is will they?

A. Ghebranious   2011  (All Rights Reserved)

One Comment
  1. Jennifer Baratta permalink

    Good Luck! This is going to be a long year.

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