There has been, as of 8pm tonight, a move on the leadership of the Federal Labor Party. While Julia Gillard hasn’t formally challenged Rudd, the right wing faction are supporting her. As I write this, there is turmoil, not only within the Labor camp, but also the Liberal Party. This challenge will, in an instant, change the landscape of the upcoming election.
In one fell swoop, by installing Gillard as PM, Labor can erase its past mistakes, blaming them, perhaps unfairly, on Kevin Rudd. Equally, in one fell swoop, Tony Abbott has lost most of the ground he has recently gained. Labor will have cleaned the slate, and gained another chance. Gillard is undoubtedly a more convincing leader than Rudd ever was. Rudd’s job was to oust Howard. He did that with alacrity and aplomb. However his subsequent performance has been lacklustre to say the least.
On the other hand, by installing Tony Abbott as leader, the Libs have put all their money on returning a government along the lines of the Howard government. This has been a mistake of massive proportions. There will never be another long-serving conservative government along the lines of the Howard regime. He was a fitting end to an era.
Like Obama, Rudd was a herald of the new century, yet, unlike Obama, perhaps Rudd is merely a seat-warmer. The hours will decide.
The leadership challenge has been posted. Rudd has given a press conference.
Soon after 9am, we’ll all know who is going head to head with Tony Abbott.