Voters in the Wentworth Electorate this coming Saturday (October 20) will have their say on the toppling of their popular member Malcolm Turnbull as Australia’s 29th Prime Minister in a By-election vital to the fortunes of the government.
If Turnbull backed David Sharma does not win the two-party preferred vote, there will be an unstable “hung” parliament which could precipitate an early general election if the Coalition is then no longer able to control a working majority in the House of Representatives. Perhaps, the sooner the people are consulted the sooner the bitter wrangling within the Liberal Party will end.
After Malcolm Turnbull took office, the Coalition right faction, powered by the Conservative Media, has carped at pretty well everything he has or hasn’t done.
- He was even blamed him for the crashing of the Australian Bureau of Statistics Website on the evening of the 2016 Census and for the use of a Postal Ballot to assess the will of the people on Gay-Marriage.
- When he improved funding for the National Disability Scheme, adopted Gonski recommendations on education funding, and imposed a fiscally responsible levy on the major banks, he was accused of abandoning core Liberal principles, and implementing Labor policies.
- He was criticized for being a Republican, and then abandoning his principles because he would not advance the Republican cause during the life of the present beloved Queen.
- The Right strongly disagreed with the bipartisan agreement with Labor to work toward constitutional recognition of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders by holding a referendum, yet accused Turnbull of a lack of leadership when he abandoned the idea after the Uluru Statement from the Heart created controversy over their desire to have a voice in the formulation of Indigenous Policies.
- When he sought to uphold ministerial standards of conduct in the wake of Barnaby Joyce’s indiscretions, he was mocked for sermonizing.
- He was repeatedly taunted when a particular poll showed the Coalition trailing Labor narrowly in two party preference terms, even although they were consistently ahead in the primary vote, and Turnbull always polled ahead of Shorten as preferred Prime Minister. He was blamed because the Coalition was behind in this poll result when the disunity the Right engendered was largely responsible.
- It has been the Right, not Turnbull, who has launched the present anti-ABC campaign, for not promoting Conservative propaganda.
- But it was the Right’s obdurate stance on Climate Change that has proved to be Turnbull’s Achilles Heel. Private enterprise has not been willing to invest now in environmentally damaging coal mining, and new coal-fired electricity generation plants. If the government were to fund such expensive constructions it might reduce electricity prices for consumers, but at what cost to tax-payers?
- The Right has admitted to using Climate Change Denial as an weapon to gain an electoral advantage, but what price will we pay by way of environmental damage if the Climate Change scientists are correct and we do not meet reasonable targets for emission reduction?
You might have thought that the perverse Right would have softened their anti-Turnbull rhetoric in the wake of their success in deposing him, and perhaps even thanked him for his contributions.
But No! Despite not being able to give a credible reason for replacing him, and despite trumpeting the many significant economic achievements of his administration to assert the superiority of Coalition economic management over Labor, his many detractors have continued to belittle and blame him.
Ungracious in Victory indeed!!
• They blamed him for his own demise by not contesting the second leadership ballot, saying he abandoned the Party by resigning.
• He was blamed for endorsing David Sharma as the Liberal candidate for Wentworth in the face of Scott Morrison’s wish for a female candidate.
• Turnbull’s only criticism of his opponents has been a very reasonable observation that deposed Prime Ministers who stay around after their defeat to create dissent were like miserable ghosts.
• They even hold him responsible for his Son Alex suggesting that Wentworth voters should not vote for the Liberal candidate at Saturday’s by-election.
• There is little doubt that it will be Turnbull who is held accountable should the Liberal vote fall short to win office for David Sharma.
For me the issue I’m most concerned about at the next general election is the culture of bullying, particularly against women, that has developed within the Liberal Party.
I really think that this is out of character for the Coalition, one that has been created by the intransigence of the Right in their intent to be rid of Turnbull, and to gain ascendency over the small l faction of the Liberal Party.
Promoting this culture has been Alan Jones with his aggressive and disgusting, bullying attacks. I only wish Australians were able to vote him out of his arm-chair critic office. He is always right, and will never budge, but perhaps it is time politicians stopped meekly deferring to him.