Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was an easy target from the outset, in part due to his pentecostel Christian faith. In what has become a very secular society, many Australians feel uncomfortable with arm waving, charismatic forms of worship. This was countered to some extent by Morrison’s jovial, ‘blokey’ persona, but following an ill-advised trip to Hawaii during the 2019 bushfires, his approval rating began a downhill slide.
He has since been labelled a liar by the French President and by his own deputy leader, Barnaby Joyce. He has been accused of being an unpleasant bully by numerous people, including a former Liberal State Premier. Now, on the eve of calling an election, there are charges of racial vilification during the 2007 battle for preselection in his NSW federal seat of Cook. All these charges raise another issue; hypocrisy from a man professing to hold Christian values.
This piece is not about whether any of these accusations are true, it’s simply to point out what an easy target he has become for the opposition. Every word he utters and every decision he makes is scrutinized by both mainstream and social media. In many instances he is damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t.
Placards such as the one below are already appearing here in the Blue Mountains. When the election campaign proper begins, the pressure on Scott Morrison and the attacks on his character will be relentless.
DID THE BUDGET MISS THE TARGET?
Do people really care about the Liberal party’s one-off cost-of-living payment when we are dealing with the ghastly spectre of climate change? I really don’t think they do, particularly younger voters. Meanwhile, Baby Boomers seem less worried about tax cuts and increasingly concerned about health care, especially in relation to residential care. Albanese is being criticized for not providing details of how he would fund Labor’s promises, but in the midst of Morrison’s ever-increasing troubles that may be a non-issue, even though it shouldn’t be.
One possibility for the Libs would be to blind-side Labor by, even at this late hour, changing leader. Mind you, politicians have big egos and it is highly unlikely that Scott Morrison would willingly step aside. But in the back rooms of power there must be arrows being drawn from quivers. That someone from his own party may fire the fatal shot just highlights the brutality of politics.
Not long ago Anthony Albanese was miles behind Morrison as preferred PM. Dubbed ‘Each Way Albo’ and mocked for his odd voice and bland personality.
That lead has been completely eroded and the pair are now on level terms.
Would the Liberals scrape home with treasurer Josh Frydenberg as leader? Hmm, I doubt it. Almost ten years in office is a very long time and there is a sense that the nation is ready for change. However, a new leader with less ‘baggage’ might prevent a wipe-out.
If Labor wins, Albanese will naturally find life more difficult. The media glare is unavoidable if there is a mis-step or when hard decisions have to be made.
By the way, the PM’s nickname SCOMO derives from the letters of Morrison’s first and last name. It’s inoffensive and he embraces it, probably because he is called many, far worse things! Apply the same method to Anthony Albanese ‘s name and the result is not so pleasant. Oh my word, who would be a politician? NOT ME.
NOTE – I have never belonged to a political party in my life. The only other blog on this site remotely political was written in support of changing the date of Australia Day. It’s called I THOUGHT I WAS ONLY LEFT-HANDED. 😎