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Waiting Patiently…

By Isaac Levido on March 4, 2011 in Other

Political history is replete with famous sayings; those legendary utterances people have used to give some literal meaning to the machinations of the world’s second oldest profession. Few are more memorable than former Queensland Premier Wayne Goss’s apt characterisation of the feelings of his northern compatriots leading up to the 1996 federal election. On the fateful day, Goss wryly opined that Queenslanders were sitting on their verandas with baseball bats waiting for soon-to-be-former Prime Minister Paul Keating.

While these politics-as-bloodsport analogies are sometimes a bit overdone, it’s hard to point to a more appropriate depiction for the thrashing the NSW Labor Government faces on Saturday, March 26. Although unfortunately for Kristina Keneally and what’s left of her motley crew, Goss’s rather brutal portrayal somewhat underdoes the impending wrath. In reality, voters are unlikely to wait patiently on their verandas. Come election day, Keneally will be lucky to even make it onto the street.

Rarely can categorical assertions be reliably made about elections, but Labor will definitely lose this one. It’s just a matter of a degree. A consensus is beginning to build, supported by polling, suggesting a swing against the government of at least ten per cent is coming. And Keneally doesn’t have to look far for the most telling evidence of her impending demise: at last count, twenty-two Labor MPs have announced they’re giving this one a miss and not seeking re-election. Talk about rats fleeing a sinking ship.

So why the coming doom? Firstly, Labor has been in power in NSW since 1995. Even the best governments struggle to remain electorally successful after long periods in office; after a time, people just want a change. Unfortunately for us, we’ve had the unpleasant privilege of witnessing what best resembles a bad soap-opera as NSW Labor shamelessly scrambled to provide that change internally over the last four years. Throw in some woeful incompetence – most recently displayed by the rushed sell-off of the State’s electricity assets – and the seemingly never-ending scandals, and a bad electoral loss is well and proper.

While the result is effectively pre-determined in terms of a change in government, that doesn’t mean Labor won’t fight tooth-and-nail. The hard-heads at Sussex Street know that there’s a long-term survival issue on the cards. If the Government suffers a likely best-case-scenario swing of ten per cent, the layout of the State Parliament will be effectively reversed, with the Coalition enjoying something like a fifteen-to-twenty seat majority.

However, in the not completely impossible circumstance where the swing against the Government looks more like the whopping twenty-five per cent shellacking it copped in the Penrith by-election last June, it’s game over for the NSW Labor Party for a long time.

What would really have been best for Labor was if they had just lost the 2007 poll. That would have left them in a much better position to prove a credible opponent this election, or next. Instead, four years and three premiers later, NSW Labor is set to be banished to the electoral wilderness for a decade, or more.

1 COMMENT. SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS

  1. Why believe coalition Supporting Local Communities?
    It’s all about power and money most Politicians and parties wanted above all and after all election?
    Just listen how Barry O’Farrell convincing voters: “Over the last four years I announced positive and practical policies which will help support local communities……..” .
    Take a look below the link subject: “Time for Action” in “Healthy Active Life” program that convert Broken hill into a Healthy Las Vergas Broken Hill economy? Link with http://www.streetcorner.com.au/news/show… , will you then still believe Barry O’Farrell’s announced positive and practical policies which will help support local communities……..” ?
    Will you also believe there were only 1-2 Politicians responding to this greatest “Healthy Las Vergas Broken Hill economy model”? Why do the most Politicians not pass this simple political test who with$1.65 million each annual spending for?
    Masealake (Member of Inventor Association QLD)

    Posted by: masealake | March 22, 2011, 1:54 PM |

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