The Australian Model
The Australian Labor Party, facing defeat, changed leader before the coming election. The new prime minister is Julia Gillard (right). There would have been a lesson for this country, but it is too late.
Actually, there was a lesson for the British Labour Party because the ALP has pulled this stunt before, in 1983, changing its leader on the day the election was called and putting in Bob Hawke, who went on to win not just that election but the next three.
This time, though, it is possible that the Labor Party has moved too early. An election does not have to be held until the end of the year, and it is possible that the Liberals could retaliate by ditching their leader, Tony Abbott, a climate-change sceptic, but I don’t know enough about Australian politics to judge the Liberal alternatives.
I know enough about it, however, to know that Conservative Home has copied my article from last weekend’s Independent on Sunday, which drew another parallel between the fate of the Australian Democrats after they supported John Howard’s Liberal-National equivalent of VAT in 1996 and the Liberal Democrats here. At least I credited Brent Martin, who wrote about the analogy first.
Photograph: Mick Tsikas/ReutersTagged in: australia, plagiarism
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