Join 3,497 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


Ruddrolled
June 23, 2010 6:09 AM   Subscribe

As reported a few hours ago in The Australian, the right wing faction of the Australian Labor Party rolls on Rudd and a caucus meeting is scheduled for 9 tomorrow morning, where it's predicted that he'll lose the ballot. One senior party source said: "This crypto-facist made no effort to build a base within the party and now his only faction - Newspoll - has deserted him. He is gone."
posted by unliteral (59 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
It is probably worth mentioning to anyone not tuned in to Australian politics that the result of this challenge, if succesful, is Australia's first female Prime Minister.
posted by Serial Killer Slumber Party at 6:20 AM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Explains why Julia Gillard and Rudd are the top two Twitter trends. Now if Conroy and his filter get the flick, I'll be happy to vote Labor.
posted by AD_ at 6:27 AM on June 23, 2010


Does this mean he gets kicked with the giant boot?
posted by nestor_makhno at 6:31 AM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


The first half of the interview with Garrett on Lateline was one of the funniest things I've seen in a while. He was quite impressive when he got a chance to talk about whales, though.

Rudd is toast.
posted by hawthorne at 6:39 AM on June 23, 2010


I know it isn't a direct Simpson's quote, but does it mean that the conversations over?
posted by edgeways at 6:40 AM on June 23, 2010


The first half of the interview with Garrett on Lateline was one of the funniest things I've seen in a while.
I know nothing.
Does this mean he gets kicked with the giant boot?
If you mean by that, a giant boot up for Abbott, Oh My! Yes.
posted by unliteral at 6:46 AM on June 23, 2010


Newspoll has deserted him - well I guess, since his personal rating was getting pretty low. But the two party preferred ratings had Labor at 52%, and they hadn't even started campaigning yet. What the fuck are the factions thinking, going to a challenge right before an election?
posted by harriet vane at 6:48 AM on June 23, 2010


I'm about as lefty as they come but I'm not sure I appreciate my vote and the vote of the Australian public having been usurped by the union movement. This is about the dumbest thing I could ever have imagined no more than 3 months ago. Alright, Rudd was pretty stupid with the mining tax (et al) but it was no hangable offence. Dude is being rolled because he doesn't play factionalism - I predict that there will be some voter backlash over this and that the greens will gain as a result.
posted by peacay at 6:53 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


I'm about as lefty as they come but I'm not sure I appreciate my vote and the vote of the Australian public having been usurped by the union movement.

Unless you live in Rudd's electorate, the only way you could ever vote for or against him is by joining the ALP, which is in principle supposed to be an organisation of, for, by the union movement.
posted by stammer at 7:02 AM on June 23, 2010 [4 favorites]


I'm not playing hairsplitting games stammer. I disagree with the way you characterise the situation and I'll leave it at that.
posted by peacay at 7:11 AM on June 23, 2010


Can an Aussie Mefite do an 'in a nutshell' summary of what is happening and why? Is Kevin Rudd seen as a weak leader?
posted by Happy Dave at 7:14 AM on June 23, 2010


I'm not an expert, but here's how it looks right now: Rudd has fumbled some key issues like the emissions trading scheme and is currently being slammed for wanting to tax mining companies more. The Murdoch media has been attacking him since the get-go. Backroom chat says that behind the scenes he's a control-freak who doesn't involve caucus in any decision-making. He has no factional support - he rose to prominence very quickly out of nowhere (background is as a diplomat, not a pollie) so I guess the support was just a flash in the pan.

None of this has had much influence on voters: they don't like him as a person, too nerdy for most Aussies, but they were still probably going to vote Labor anyway. But it's not the voters who get to make this decision, it's the party room.

My own opinion is similar to what's outlined in this blog post about the ETS election we never had - he was saving his popularity to spend it all pushing through a climate plan. But he miscalculated and it's given encouragement to everyone to have a crack at him. He should have gone the double dissolution election when he had the chance.
posted by harriet vane at 7:25 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Smoke and wilful will know more about it though, I'm guessing, but it's getting pretty late over on the east coast so they might have clocked off after the press conference.
posted by harriet vane at 7:27 AM on June 23, 2010


I know it isn't a direct Simpson's quote, but does it mean that the conversations over?

The conversation is normally over on Mefi when the word "Australia" is used.

That said, I'll concur that Rudd is likely toast. See you all in the morning...
posted by pompomtom at 7:40 AM on June 23, 2010


It wasn't that many years ago I was sporting a KEVIN 07 bumper sticker. My opinion of him has been decimated since that time. I had interpreted him as being a boring, efficient, "get things done" bureaucrat. He seemed to have a brain about him, could write a mean essay. It has become increasingly clear that he's just not cut-out for the job. I mean, he hasn't actually screwed things up, he's just been a completely vacant vessel, who gets little done, and hasn't moved to change anything much at all. This was confirmed to me this afternoon, long before this spill hit the headlines, when my wife received a letter from her work informing her of the new national award she would be moving to, in which her personal leave would be halved, overtime pay cut, meal breaks reduced...and I thought, Rudd, you fought and won an election on this issue, saying you were winding back Howard's industrial relations bullshit, and then we get this in the mail?

I've always been a fan of Gillard. She's certainly much more well-endowed in the bollocks department than Rudd is. If she gets in, I might still be able to hold my nose and give Labor my 2nd preference above the Greens when the election comes around.

I'm about as lefty as they come but I'm not sure I appreciate my vote and the vote of the Australian public having been usurped by the union movement.

Them's the breaks. That's how Labor works, that's how our Parliamentary system works, and Rudd is proof that being not factionally-aligned doesn't necessarily make for a useful, productive leader. Let's watch and see how this plays out - I predict it will all be resolved in a much swifter, more efficient manner than all the Liberal leadership contests we had to put up with last year. And how long has it been since we've had a Labor leader from the left faction?

I predict that there will be some voter backlash over this and that the greens will gain as a result.

Heh. Works for me.

Anyway, all the excitement has kept me awake, and I have to try to get some shut-eye for a few hours before I have to get up to watch some grown men kick a ball around a paddock.
posted by Jimbob at 7:42 AM on June 23, 2010 [3 favorites]


Rudd completly turned me off listening to Question Time too, I might add. I ended up just watching Twitter so I could keep track of Wilson Tuckey Ejections. Our Lady Julia will be sure to liven things up a bit.
posted by Jimbob at 7:44 AM on June 23, 2010


A polar shift is taking place at one of the antipodes? How positively shocking.
posted by Smart Dalek at 7:46 AM on June 23, 2010


You know, I saw the title "Ruddrolled" and I thought this was going to be about all the times Conan O'Brien plays that scene from "Mac & Me" with the kid rolling down the hill in the wheelchair every time Paul Rudd is on his show.
posted by phong3d at 7:46 AM on June 23, 2010


Someone, somewhere made the point recently that Rudd is really a born treasurer. He seems, in fact, incapable of separating fiscal issues from social issues - hence throwing money at every problem that comes along, while ignoring things (like the health system, mental health) that he had promised us he could simply use his Mad Buearocratic Skillz to fix.
posted by Jimbob at 7:48 AM on June 23, 2010


Some quotes from Rudd's press conference at 10:10pm eastern.

"We've gone into some heavy weather of late and a few people have become, shall I say, a little squeamish at that."

"If I return as the leader of the Government and Prime Minister, I will be very clear of one thing, this party and Government will not be lurching to the right on the question of asylum seekers."
posted by harriet vane at 7:48 AM on June 23, 2010


Horrible stench of fear coming off this, but better the deed done sooner.

Who knew the old man had so much blood in him?
posted by Wolof at 7:49 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jimbob, that's a pretty good take on Rudd, a natural treasurer. If/when Gillard wins, will she give him Foreign Minister, do you think? It'd probably put him to better use than as PM.

I'm concerned that having talked up Gillard for so long, Murdoch's parrots will now turn on her and call her a union puppet. I'm absolutely certain they'll plumb new depths of misogyny, right behind Wilson Tuckey.

Ugh, that's too many mixed metaphors for one night. Will check in tomorrow :)
posted by harriet vane at 7:53 AM on June 23, 2010


"If I return as the leader of the Government and Prime Minister, I will be very clear of one thing, this party and Government will not be lurching to the right on the question of asylum seekers."

What? He said that? He thinks that's what it's about? That Labor voters are abandoning him in droves and fleeing to the Greens because he's such a bleeding-heart lefty on the issue of asylum seekers? Mind officially boggled.
posted by Jimbob at 7:55 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think it's more of a plea to the left factions, in the hopes they won't abandon him.
posted by harriet vane at 8:02 AM on June 23, 2010


Meanwhile, elsewhere in Australia...
posted by No-sword at 8:10 AM on June 23, 2010


--That's how Labor works, that's how our Parliamentary system works--

Jimbob, there is no precedent for a 1st term sitting PM to be rolled. It has never happened and I believe it's hugely objectionable. It's really got nothing to do with my feelings about Rudd or Gillard (as a matter of fact I think they are a pretty good team all things considered).
posted by peacay at 8:15 AM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Jimbob, there is no precedent for a 1st term sitting PM to be rolled.

Oh I agree that things aren't as bad in the polls are the media make them out to be, nor has the government screwed up in any major way. I've just always felt, personally, that Gillard was more suited for the position, and I still feel that the polls aren't reflecting the "reality" of Tony Abbott's approval in the electorate, and that changing PM at this point won't damage Labor's vote in a significant way. The Liberals haved moved from a competent, likeable leader to an ugly fanatic, Labor looks like moving from a boring leader the public are sick of to one that's much more down-to-earth, realistic and capable - maybe I give people too much credit, but I find it had to accept people would really approve of Abbott more than Gillard when it comes to putting pencil to ballot. I also tend to think the women-voting-for-a-woman factor will outweight the misogynist-voting-against-a-woman factor. All those people will have been voting for Abbott anyway, he's cut from the same cloth.
posted by Jimbob at 8:58 AM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


"Labor MPs said the Deputy Prime Minister was “very angry” with suggestions that her loyalty had been questioned by Mr Rudd."

Wait... do I have this straight, did Gillard become so angry at Rudd's suggestion that she was challenging him for the leadership that she decided to challenge him for the leadership?

If that's right, that's kinda awesome, in a careful-what-you-wish-for & I'm-really-insulted-you-called-me-easily-insulted kinda way.
posted by Kattullus at 9:30 AM on June 23, 2010


Wait, Australia is a democracy?

*ducks*
posted by clvrmnky at 12:04 PM on June 23, 2010


I can't tell you how disappointed I was, after reading about "factional Labor Party warlords", that it was some rather genteel political maneuvering rather than a cross-country chase/battle involving people with names like Lord Humungus and Wez. Come on, Australia! We Murricans are well on our way to turning our country into a strife-torn dystopia, don't let down the side.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:22 PM on June 23, 2010


What's he got against faces anyway
posted by jtron at 12:44 PM on June 23, 2010


Can someone give some more granularity on how the politics of asylum play out in Australia? I mean, I understand that generally the conservatives will be more hostile etc., but it can't be that simple, can it? I mean, here in the U.S., immigration politics don't cut as cleanly as that either - many, many Democrats support hostile positions the most hard core Republicans would feel comfortable with, and the positions are subject to both ethnic and regional variation. How does that work in Australia? I ask because I'm wondering about that Rudd quote "If I return as the leader of the Government and Prime Minister, I will be very clear of one thing, this party and Government will not be lurching to the right on the question of asylum seekers." How is that going to play, whom is he addressing and what was his calculus?
posted by VikingSword at 12:53 PM on June 23, 2010


Can someone give some more granularity on how the politics of asylum play out in Australia?

See previous discussion.

How is that going to play, whom is he addressing and what was his calculus?

It's a very weird comment, since Rudd has been only very, very, very slightly to the left of the previous government on the issue, and anyone who cares about and understands the issue feels that he's already lurched to the right. But, as harriet vane pointed out, it was probably more for consumption by union factions than the general public. His calculus? Desperation?

I think in broad terms, the dynamics are probably comparable to in the US - "boat people" are a real dog whistle issue for conservatives, and it probably bought the previous conservative goverrnment two extra terms in office. And, of course, a lot of working class labor voters worry about illegal immigrants too, generally not in terms of "they're taking our jobs", but "they're getting a free ride". On the whole, public opinion is misinformed (the media and politicians have created a climate where the majority of Australians seem to be convinced thousands of nasty brown people are sneaking in on boats every year, when in fact only a few percentage of asylum seekers come in this way) and entirely xenophobic (no-one ever seems to mention, say, Brits who overstay their visas, who as far as I'm aware are in much greater number).
posted by Jimbob at 1:22 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Thanks, Jimbob. Interesting to contrast this to the immigration debate here.
posted by VikingSword at 1:32 PM on June 23, 2010


Some days I really love working at Parliament House.
posted by the duck by the oboe at 2:35 PM on June 23, 2010


I've seen it mentioned that Senator Conroy is a Rudd backer, and Kate Lundy (former communications spokesperson) is with Gillard. Could this spell the end of the nanny filter if Conroy gets shafted?
posted by bystander at 2:44 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


From all reports it looks like Rudd is gone.

I liked one of Andrew Bolt's comments:

Final thought: has Gillard taken Rudd’s car keys off him? Wouldn’t want him hightailing it to Yarralumla tonight to ask the Governor General for a snap election (source).
posted by kisch mokusch at 2:46 PM on June 23, 2010


The only thing holding me back from voting for the Rudd again is Conroy's internet filtering plan.

The only thing holding me back from voting for Gillard, assuming she wins, is her bollocks education policies (myschools league tables etc). I'd love for her to get the top job, but not at that cost.
posted by robotot at 3:40 PM on June 23, 2010


Let me just say this.

This is the absolute height of political stupidity from the Federal Labor Party.

Kevin Rudd is the man who got Australia through the GFC virtually unscathed, delivered the biggest shake up to health care in generations and, importantly, was the only man in the Labor Party who got John Howards measure and finally defeated the prick.

Kevin Rudd, though unpopular in the Murdoch-owned Newspolls at the moment, would have gone to an election with this record and facing Tony Abbott, who has said you can't trust what he says unless it's written down, is toxic with the female vote and has basically said "I'll bring back Workchoices."

Despite the fact Rudd was unpopular in opinion polls, there is no way Abbott would have beaten him on election day. No way.

Now, with Gillard mere minutes away from taking the office of PM, I fear that Abbott will win the election. This isn't because I think badly of Gillard. Far from it. She's extremely talented and would have made a fantastic Prime Minister one day.

But this kind of in-fighting is the stuff that kept Labor out of office for over a decade, and helped deliver John Howard election victory after election victory. And it's happening now, mere months (possibly weeks) from an election.

Gillard should have waited until after the election if she was going to challenge at all. But since it seems it's a foregone conclusion that she'll become PM, I hope she can beat Abbott. Perhaps she will. Abbott's bad qualities don't dissapear just because we have a new PM. But I really do wonder if people will be able to forget the backstabbing, the in-fighting and the inherent sexism that exisits in a large part of Australian male society, to see Gillard as a real choice on election day.

Time to go watch the vote. Sigh.
posted by Effigy2000 at 3:58 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


But I really do wonder if people will be able to forget the backstabbing, the in-fighting

Well, the Liberals are hoping the public forget their much worse, cynical and vicious infighting from, what, 6 months ago? At least the Labor members are lining up and being public about who they support.

and the inherent sexism that exisits in a large part of Australian male society

The Northern Territory had a female Chief Minister for some time - that's all the proof I need that bogans are capable of supporting a woman for a leader.
posted by Jimbob at 4:12 PM on June 23, 2010


"Well, the Liberals are hoping the public forget their much worse, cynical and vicious infighting from, what, 6 months ago? At least the Labor members are lining up and being public about who they support."
posted by Jimbob at 10:12 AM on June 24

Again, I think it's a matter of timing. 6 months ago the Libs were a rabble, but now they seem to have unified behind Abbott. And here's the Government, who should be governing, weeks out from an election, killing a first term PM.

So yeah, I think some people will remember what the Libs did, but the knife wound in Rudd's back will still be open, bleeding and sore come election time.

"The Northern Territory had a female Chief Minister for some time - that's all the proof I need that bogans are capable of supporting a woman for a leader."
posted by Jimbob at 10:12 AM on June 24

Yeah, but more recently, I ask you, how's Keneally travelling in NSW? Spectacularly bad. And by some reports, Bligh isn't doing too well in QLD either.

And I can't help recall how popular the nicknmae "Vinegar Tits" became when the possibility arose that Gillard might become leader back in the days Labor was in Opposition.
posted by Effigy2000 at 4:24 PM on June 23, 2010


Well. NSW is a complete basket case, the Labor government there is way, way past its use by date. They basically ran out of anyone with the slightest evidence of sanity who could be leader.
posted by Jimbob at 4:30 PM on June 23, 2010 [1 favorite]


Done. And I, for one, welcome our new PM overlady.
posted by Kerasia at 4:31 PM on June 23, 2010


Gillard should have waited until after the election if she was going to challenge at all.

It's interesting that one the one hand we have some echoing Rudd's "I was elected by the people of Australia" republicanism and on the other the suggestion that people somehow prefer not to get a chance to "vote on the PM".

It's undeniable that Westminster systems have presidential style elections in practice (I'm not sure if it was Kinnock who started it or if he was copying Thatcher). Kevin 07 was the most nauseating attempt at turning a General Election into a popularity contest. That doesn't change the fact that we don't have presidential elections.

It's official. Rudd bottled it (just like he has almost everything else since Copenhagen).
posted by GeckoDundee at 4:36 PM on June 23, 2010


Rudd didn't challenge. There was one nomination for PM and one for deputy, and both Gillard and Wayne Swann won unopposed. Rudd essentially stood down.

The next federal election can be held as late as April 2011. It's going to be fun watching the "gay churchy loser*" Abbot campaign against an unmarried, childless and very very smart redhead female sitting PM.


* as named by his daughter.
posted by Kerasia at 4:39 PM on June 23, 2010


The countdown to Prime Minister Abbott begins now.
posted by Effigy2000 at 4:40 PM on June 23, 2010


ABC: Internal Liberal party polling suggests Gillard would "smash" Abbott in election.
posted by Jimbob at 4:44 PM on June 23, 2010


Shock horror. Internal Liberal Party polling allows Abbott to claim underdog status? Paint me surprised that their own polling that also convieniently leaked said that.

Have you ever been surveyed, Bernard?
posted by Effigy2000 at 4:49 PM on June 23, 2010


Abbott's like the schoolyard bully who blushes and turns to jelly when he has to talk to a girl. He won't know which way to turn. Does he give free rein to his natural misogyny? That would be very ugly. Or does he drop his pugilistic style? That would be as graceful as a hippo taking up ballet.
posted by GeckoDundee at 4:53 PM on June 23, 2010


Effigy2000, I understand your concerns but an election is months away (I reckon Nov or Feb) and Gillard and the Labor Party have a many opportunities to get positive again with the public.

I mean, the Coalition has no proactive policies, all it talks about is negating this and that implemented or proposed by Labor.

I wonder if Malcolm Turnbull is going to challenge Abbot again before the election, now he's not resigning from parliament.

If this whole thing was a real farce, Peter Costello wouldn't have resigned and we'd have a Costello & Abbot team contesting the next election. What fun that would have been.
posted by Kerasia at 4:53 PM on June 23, 2010


"I understand your concerns but an election is months away (I reckon Nov or Feb) and Gillard and the Labor Party have a many opportunities to get positive again with the public."
posted by Kerasia at 10:53 AM on June 24

I'm not a praying man Kerasia but I pray that you're right.
posted by Effigy2000 at 5:00 PM on June 23, 2010


The countdown to Prime Minister Abbott begins now.
I read it here first. (I'm also not a praying man Kerasia but I also pray that you're right.)
Gillard will not be able to hold this together with regional seats crashing across the country. Kevin is well out of it.
posted by unliteral at 5:07 PM on June 23, 2010


Gillard will not be able to hold this together with regional seats crashing across the country.

Don't forget that John Howard turned near-certain defeat into victory at the 11th hour, by skilfully playing a crisis about boat people.

All Gillard has to do is spring a similar kind of October surprise, say by removing the unpopular tax on feminine hygiene products.

In homage to the Tampa election, we could call it the tampon election.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:17 PM on June 23, 2010 [2 favorites]


Holy shit. He can show emotion. If only we'd know that before the spill.
posted by Jimbob at 6:30 PM on June 23, 2010


Okay this is tough to watch.
posted by Jimbob at 6:32 PM on June 23, 2010


Okay this is tough to watch.
Tell me about it. This should have been short and sharp.
posted by unliteral at 6:41 PM on June 23, 2010


Gillard, after the 'I'm proud of" from Rudd, gives an "I believe" speech.
posted by unliteral at 7:02 PM on June 23, 2010


Sky news has some great captions.
posted by Jimbob at 8:30 PM on June 23, 2010


Coup de Murdoch. Hell hath no fury like a cabal of billionaires scorned.
posted by moorooka at 9:06 PM on June 23, 2010


« Older The balloon was launched at 5:37pm (PST) from Oxna...  |  "'Jewish people don't own the ... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments