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Compassion Fatigue

KEY Liberal powerbrokers who backed Brendan Nelson as Opposition Leader have switched their allegiance to Malcolm Turnbull.

The shift, combined with a general sense of despair at Dr Nelson’s recent performance, means a leadership spill is likely within months.

Liberal Party insiders had not expected a leadership challenge to Dr Nelson until at least the end of this year. But many of his colleagues have concluded they have to get rid of him sooner rather than later.

The consensus is firming that Mr Turnbull, the party’s ambitious Treasury spokesman, will replace him in the next month or two.

The Australian

I am sure that You can hear the cries of joy from the left that the Liberal Party may be considering pulling the pin on Brendan Nelson’s leadership sooner rather than later. It may well be a case of “careful what you wish for ” though, because Malcom Turnbull is likely to be more of a real prospect that Brendan has been thus far.

I made no secret of the fact that i personally preferred Turnbull for the Job but in the wake of such a disheartening loss at the last election it was always going to be a poisoned chalice to take on the leadership of the party, and It was also always going to be a very big ask to expect any leader to hit the ground running and immediately win the hearts and minds of the voting public. We conservatives should be prepared to acknowledge that Nelson has taken the inevitable triumphalist  flak that was always going to be thrown by The disciples  of Brother Number One and their fellow travellers.    I suspect Nelson’s poor ratings actually have a lot  to do with the fact that we have had a very long real campaign, for the whole year prior to the last election (in particular from the unions and other pressure groups) which has given many people a big case of “political compassion fatigue”. Put simply a lot of people just want to sit back and not think about politics for a while,  no body I know wants to hear any kind of electioneering for quite a while.

I expect that there will be a change in leadership of the opposition sooner rather than later and I also expect that Turnbull could be a formidable leader of the opposition, but anyone taking on that mantle has to run the race as a marathon and not as a sprint because there is the best part of three years before we go to the polls again and that is a very long time in politics.

Cheers Comrades



  1. LL says:

    “I am sure that You can hear the cries of joy from the left that the Liberal Party may be considering pulling the pin on Brendan Nelson’s leadership sooner rather than later.”

    I’m sure you can’t hear any such thing, Iain. Why on earth would the left be rejoicing??
    Dr Nelson is the perfect leader for the Liberal Party right now – inept, out of his depth and laughable.

    The longer they take to sort themselves out a new leader, the better.

    I think it is the right who would be celebrating his removal, not the left.
    You really should think before you type.

  2. raydixon says:

    Iain, contrary to what you’ve said I think it’ll be sad day for most ALP supporters when Brendan finally goes. He’s provided a lot of laughs and a stark contrast in the relative substance of the two parties.

    And no, I don’t think he’s just a victim of circumstances, he is his own worst enemy and is well out of his depth as a leader. If Turnbull had won the leadership I doubt he’d be down around 9% approval rating. Realistically he’d be at about 20 – 30%, which in the circumstances is not too bad.

    But I bet even Malcolm wishes Nelson could have hung around a bit longer, maybe even until after the next election because realistically the libs have little chance of getting back after just 3 years in opposition.

    Maybe when the the knives finally turn on Nelson he’ll leave the Libs and go back to the party he came from in the first place – if they’ll have him.

  3. Iain Hall says:

    Thank you for proving my point LL You minions of the left take delight at a Liberal party that is struggling in the polls and nothing gives you more pleasure than to watch internal wrangling over the leadership.

  4. raydixon says:

    Iain, this bit of data might give you some food for thought. Over the past 58 years, since Menzies was elected in 1949, there has only been 4 changes of Government. The terms of office have been 23 years, 3 years(*), 8 years, 13 years and 11 years. Government last an avarage of nearly 12 years in Australia, so it looks lke 2020 before the Libs get back in.

    Who’ll be the leader then? It certainly won’t be Nelson or even Turnbull. My money’s on Sophie Mirabella, who’ll be all grown up by then and just over 50 – the right age. That is presuming she manages to hold onto her seat down here, which is looking doubtful. My real belief is the next Liberal PM is not even an MP yet.

    (* Even Whitlam’s 3 years was actually two terms)

  5. raydixon says:

    Sorry, 5 changes of Government. The average term is still 12 years.

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