Rudd didn’t win. Howard lost.

It’s the day after the Australian federal election, and the dust hasn’t settled yet. In particular we still don’t know if John Howard has actually failed to even be elected into parliament in his own once safe seat.

What we do know is that we will have a Labor government for a while. We also know today that Peter Costello has said that he won’t seek leadership of the Liberals. Obviously he and John don’t talk much, because last night Howard was talking up Costello as the future of the party. It looks like Malcolm Turnbull is the logical choice. That, or a leadership bloodbath and meltdown.
I’m not going to shed any tears over Howards’ ignominious departure – he made his own bed, letting his ego get in the way of bowing out when all the signs were that he’d become a liability. Instead of leaving as a Liberal hero, he’s presided over an embarassing defeat – and losing his own seat, if it happens, just caps the embarassment off with an exclamation mark.

Howard lost me irretreivably the moment he coined the phrase “non-core promise” to explain his going back on election promises instead of apologising that they had subsequently become unsustainable. His willingness to believe Bush over Iraq unquestioningly, his “Pacific Solution”, the Tampa fiasco and wedge politics – his Workplace industrial relations strategy rammed through the Senate without useful discussion and in practice found to require special “fairness tests” to stop employers exploiting it shamelessly, the Northern Territory intervention without consulation, his dirty negative election campaigning – all these and so much more turned the electorate against him.

Yet he was fighting Kevin Rudd – Mr Beige. Rudd performed well – not spectacularly- in this election. he didn’t impress. I get the feeling that the Labour party could have won with a teddy bear on the leadership podium.

As long as it was warm and fuzzy, as long as it meant not voting for Past-Use-By-Date Howard, it would have won.

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2 Responses to “Rudd didn’t win. Howard lost.”


  1. 1 Doug November 29, 2007 at 5:07 pm

    Did Howard lose his seat, or not? Last I heard, it was still in question, but the US media has now lost interest.

  2. 2 microsoar November 29, 2007 at 5:31 pm

    Doug, We still don’t have the definitive answer (it’s really close, and postal votes have to be counted) but it seems very likely.


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