The New Prime Minister

27 Jun

This title is reminding me of the first chapter of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, “The Other Minister”, they are even somewhat related.

The Australian Labor party finally decided what they are doing yesterday and voted Kevin Rudd as their new leader, dumping Julia Gillard. Their policies are not significantly different, however, all in all I prefer Gillard to Rudd. This is not purely because of Rudd’s reputation of making unreasonable demands of his staffers and I’ve heard (via a friend of a friend) that when giving an award to a female PhD student he commented “So you are one of those women not having babies”. Gillard just seems to have done more stuff: the NDIS is in, the mining tax and the carbon trading scheme. Rudd did have the education revolution, but Gillard was the education minister for it. The only other thing I can think of Rudd doing was the apology to the stolen generation. Having said that, not that Rudd has come in support for gay marriage, something might be done there. Gillard seems well liked by her party and her minions, even if they did vote her out. I think the only real reason they voted her out was because of the public perception of her.

My initial reaction to this news was annoyance, “Why are they fucking around with this, when no one really cares if the leader is Rudd of Gillard?”. Turns out I was wrong. People much prefer Rudd to Gillard, but it might be the new and shiny speaking. Either way, still not likely that Labor will win the next election, BUT with a new leader they have a chance to change some policies around. I would love to see Rudd just run with a completely populist and anti-everything-Abbot-says campaign. Make gay marriage an election issue. Promise another stimulus package. Promise that he will never appear in public in speedos. I just want to see Abbot try to come up with some policies of his own.

On the plus side to everything,   Stephen Conroy has resigned (the whole cabinet has) and now Penny Wong is leader in the senate.


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