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“Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage.” Dwight D. Eisenhower

Developments On the Coalition Party Situation

Posted by Atilla89 on November 27, 2007

Just before I start, I didn’t realise this but apparently, the Democrats (“Keep the bastards honest”) has been completely whitewashed and now don’t exist as a political party!

Chaos, that’s all I can say in regards to the political situation of the Coalition. After loosing Howard and Costello, Mark Vaile is out of the seat for the Nationals.

The Nationals’ leadership opened yesterday afternoon when Mr Vaile said he would no longer be leader. Deputy leader Warren Truss, former agriculture minister Peter McGauran and NSW backbencher John Cobb were all named as contenders. NSW members Ms Hull and Luke Hartsuyker were also considered as potential deputies. If Ms Hull and Ms Bishop were to win it would be the first time all parties had women in the top posts.

As well as this, now Alexander Downer, the most senior of Liberals has decided not to become a contender. Actually, Downer’s reason (though I doubt the political one) is rather funny.

Mr Downer, the former foreign minister, decided yesterday that he would not run for the leadership after conflicting appeals from colleagues and his family. “When I mentioned (running) to my family, I have to be honest with you, they were filled with horror,” he told the ABC’s 7.30 Report last night.

So after a few developments and updates in the free-for-all in the Coalition we have the following candidates who are seeking election, either to the Liberal Party or the the Nationals. No doubt many people are wondering why a very key Liberal party member called Joe Hockey is not standing for party election. Well…

Outgoing Workplace Relations Minister Joe Hockey today ruled out standing for a leadership position in the Liberal Party. The NSW MP, who was parachuted into the industrial relations portfolio to soften the image of the Howard Government’s Work Choices regime said yesterday he still hoped to be considered for a role on the Liberal opposition’s frontbench. Mr Hockey, who was close to tears on election night as the magnitude of the Liberal loss became clear, joins Peter Costello who declared over the weekend he would not stand for the leadership. “After careful consideration and discussion with my family I have decided not to nominate for a leadership position in the Parliamentary Liberal Party,’’ Mr Hockey said in a statement. “I have served as a Minister for more than eight years in immensely rewarding and, at times, challenging portfolios. I would like to serve on the front bench in Opposition.

So next up we have Tony Abbott to try for the leadership position, I personally think he would not be that great. He has a smaller public image compared to that of Malcolm Turnbull and he doesn’t really seem to have that much charisma, there are reasons, but I won’t go into that in this post.

“I’m offering myself to my colleagues as a candidate … I will be a candidate,” he told reporters in Sydney. Mr Abbott admitted he did not have the best of campaigns, but said he had demonstrated “reasonably good people skills” and that he could “give a knock and take a knock”. “I had some tough times on the campaign trail and I would be the last to say that I was prince perfect,” he said. Mr Abbott said he was not going to repudiate the Howard government and declined to offer any new policy directions. He said he possessed the skill to speak frankly and candidly, without resorting to political spin. However, he admitted that at times he spoke “perhaps too candidly”.

Now the next important development is that Brendan Nelson has announced his intentions for the hardest job in parliament. I don’t mind him that much, even besides the fact that he is a proponent of the theory of intelligent design, which I think is absolute crap. But I really do think that Turnbull at this point, would be the absolute best bet for the Liberals.

Dr Nelson has good relations with the backbench and was widely expected to run only if he believed he was in a strong position to win.

…(from a different article)

Dr Nelson also declared he would stand for the leadership and is expected to get strong support after spending the past two days talking to his colleagues before going public. “The key tasks, as I see them, will be to rally our party and see that it is unified,” Dr Nelson said.

Some of the other minor candidates are: Chris Pyne who has confirmed today that he is considering his options for the deputy Liberal leadership. As well as this, Andrew Robb, Julie Bishop, Kay Hull and Queenslander Peter Dutton, if he hangs on a tight race for his seat are also looking for positions. Here’s a few details:

With the Liberals’ Julie Bishop and the Nationals’ Kay Hull named as likely contenders for leadership positions, there is a possibility that every major party in the House of Representatives could be led by a male-female team for the first time. Ms Bishop, the former education minister, may also yet declare she will stand for the Liberal leadership. Her pitch would be based on Western Australia’s strong performance for the Coalition and fundraising benefits from the mining-rich state, although she is also expected to compete for the deputy position. “I am talking with my colleagues and seeking their advice as to whether I should contest a position within the Liberal Party leadership,” she told The Australian last night. If she secured the deputy leadership, it is expected she would seek the Treasury portfolio.

Mr Robb, a former minister and Liberal executive director, is being supported strongly for deputy leader on the basis of his campaign experience and as a foil to the more flamboyant possible leaders from NSW. Former ageing minister Christopher Pyne, from South Australia, has said he is running for the deputy post as a generational change. “Obviously there will be a new generation of people who will need to lead the Liberal Party into the future. After 11 1/2 years of government and 11 1/2 years of the same team as leader and deputy leader, the party needs a new generation of leadership,” the 40-year-old said. “I think that I could be part of that. We need to hold this government accountable to its promises.”

Peter Dutton, who originally defeated Labor’s Cheryl Kernot for the seat of Dickson, is struggling to hold his seat although he expects to win and would stand as Liberal deputy if he survives. The Nationals’ leadership opened yesterday afternoon when Mr Vaile said he would no longer be leader. Deputy leader Warren Truss, former agriculture minister Peter McGauran and NSW backbencher John Cobb were all named as contenders. NSW members Ms Hull and Luke Hartsuyker were also considered as potential deputies. If Ms Hull and Ms Bishop were to win it would be the first time all parties had women in the top posts.

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