Tasmanian Times

Peter Tucker

The Emperor really has no clothes

Peter Tucker

Over at www.tasmanianpolitics.blogspot.com Peter Tucker thinks the journalists have mis-read the premier’s intentions regarding the latest portfolio reshuffle. He’s tipping Paul Lennon fully intends to lead Labor to the next election.

Read “The Emperor really has no clothes”: HERE

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  1. Alex Wadsley

    February 4, 2008 at 5:57 pm

    The key to this is Will Hodgman.

    Leaders usually don’t get rolled until the polls say that the party will get credibly thumped by their opponents. Lennon is unpopular, but the occasional innuendo of departure is enough to keep the small backbench and the ambitious docile. The next election is still a long way off, and if Lennon can get the mill up and get a makeover to stick for longer than 2 days (both long shots at current progress), well whose to say what the next election results will be.

    The Liberal members appear to be performing well in highlighting weaknesses in government performance, rather than leaving it to the Greens, but the strong alternative vision is still what is lacking. Interestingly Lennon’s ‘drought-proofing’ plan is not only a re-run of a 1998 Labor press release, but also echoes Will Hodgman’s own 2007 Budget response. Me-tooism is running both ways.

    Following their getaway, the Libs will clearly be thinking about this, with now being the time to build up momentum before the next poll. If this is achieved, then a Labour change will be under serious consideration again, giving Bartlett 12 or so months as Premier before an election (similar to Iemma, enough to get recognition without having any headaches of government). If not then Lennon can fight the election against Hodgman, with Bartlett ready to take charge in the event of a hung parliament.

    Given Lennon’s tarnished legacy, Will may prefer a match against him rather than Bartlett. But if he can’t make headway in the next 12 months then the credibility of the Libs being a government in their own right will be tenuous, and they’ll only be running for Opposition,…again.

  2. Dr Kevin Bonham

    February 4, 2008 at 1:35 am

    I pointed out at the time that some of the reported stats in the poll showing Lennon’s approval rating at 24% (or 26% on a two-answer basis) didn’t appear to add up assuming full-time workers were sampled proportionally. There was no effective answer to those points, so as far as I am concerned the 33% of May 2007 is the last indication that does not have a cloud hanging over it.

    It is disappointing how little state polling there is available in Tasmania at the moment; we are most likely less than two years out from an election with leadership silly-season stuff (albeit none of it much more than beat-ups at this stage) affecting both major parties. I’m sure some fresh, neutrally commissioned figures for Tasmania would be of far greater interest to pundits than whether Labor is leading the Liberals nationwide by twenty points or only eighteen.

    I must confess to having originally given the Mock’s quit theory far more time of day than it deserves, although the main point of my previous comments on it was to point out that the claimed basis for it (the federal election results) was absurd. I agree that Paul Lennon likes a fight and therefore that speculation that he might throw in the towel (especially as part of some trendy Kevin Rudd makeover job) is very likely to have the opposite effect.

    I also suspect that he is very strongly personally committed to the pulp mill and is highly unlikely to abdicate (unless rolled) until it is either clearly well on track or else dead in the water.

    The usual disclaimer applies.

  3. Ian Rist

    February 3, 2008 at 7:19 pm

    Don’t worry now Jack Johnstone is the new Police Commissioner and David Llewellyn is Attorney General they should be at least able to fix the fox farce… after all Jack Johnstone is aware of the facts, he was briefed very well when this fiasco first started. They might be able to save a fair bit of the proposed fifty million dollars of taxpayer dollars to be wasted over the next ten years. In fact by now I reckon they both know they were conned.

  4. John Biggs

    February 3, 2008 at 3:25 pm

    I don’t think that Tasmanian people do like Lennon, as indicated in his extraordinarily low personal rating of 26%. What his latest shuffle indicates is Lennon’s weakest point: tunnel vision, leading to a potentially lethal lack of judgement. His lack of judgement was the clearest feature of the pulp mill fast-track — he could only think of one thing, getting the mill up. He still may well do so, but at a cost that was completely avoidable!

    This time, his concern seems to be to demolish any opposition and to consolidate his own power (I too don’t believe that he hates being premier). He has ignored the two most competent team members, Lara Giddings and David Bartlett (if you can forget the smirk)and promoted the weakest: the do-nothing Paula Wriedt, who should have been sacked on her Macquarie Island non-performance alone; the bumbling David Llewellyn who must have had more headlines asking questions about his many bungled portfolios than any other current State politician; and the spiteful Steve Kons who jeered at the hapless Carpenters whose water supply was contaminated through forestry carelessness. Lennon’s own official lack of portfolios simply means he wants to control all of them, and with the present team of cronies and incompetents there is nothing or no-one to stop him.

    And that lack of judgment is precisely the reason why he’ll not make it to premier next time. Instead of appointing the strongest government possible he has appointed the weakest. You don’t win elections that way.

  5. Valleywatcher

    February 3, 2008 at 10:17 am

    You might be right, Peter. I think the only way Lennon will relinquish power will be if it is stolen from him by, say, a disgruntled David Bartlett getting tired of waiting for what he believes is his birthright. Your article is wrong, though in one minor point. You say that the Premier’s approval rating is in the low thirties. It is in fact at about 24% – even lower than you suggest and I don’t see that he is gaining at all on that low number. Quite the opposite in fact. Here in the Tamar Valley he is universally loathed.

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