Rarely if ever before can Phillip Adams have had such a starring role in a federal election campaign. His Late Night Live Radio National program jokes about its singular listener and that’s probably not that far from being the truth many nights. Yet there was the transcript of an Adams interview in all this morning’s papers with excerpts being played on everybody’s morning news. It just shows that you don’t need a mass audience to have an impact.
Provided you have a guest like Kevin Rudd to again take Labor’s stuttering election campaign off the rails. Just when Julia Gillard looked like asserting herself at last the man she deposed was back sharing the spotlight. And while what Mr Rudd said was perfectly proper and generous it highlighted more than anything else the confusion that clearly exists in the public mind about why he was actually replaced. That confusion will become even more pronounced as 21 August gets closer and the Government takes up his offer to campaign for the team because somethings are more important that K.Rudd.
What those things are, whether being espoused by Julia or Kevin, can be summed up in two words — Tony Abbott. The best I can gather from the Labor campaigning is that somehow the Leader of the Opposition should be seen as the personification of everything that is evil. The terrible deeds he would perform on becoming Prime Minister are not specified apart from trying to have us believe that he is such a stupid fellow that he actually would return to the industrial relations system of 2007 and thus guarantee that he too would be a one term Prime Minister.
No wonder that the Government is seen as doing badly when its whole focus is so narrowly negative. Unlike previous governments it even has trouble running on its record as the Rudd dismissal was an admission that the record was so bad that its principal architect had to go.
No wonder that Tony Abbott had time for a spot of lawn bowls yesterday. The way his opponents are going he would almost have time for another spot of surfing to go with his morning cycling if the mood takes him. Just staying out of trouble has been a winning formula so far.
It was yesterday with the battle of the nightly television pictures going slightly his way with the lead reinforced by the late night radio intervention.