The rebirth of Kevin Rudd MkII as Aussie PM is not enough; not enough difference, not enough support, not enough time.
The three problems;
- Rudd did not spend his time on the backbench reformulating his profile and connection with the public. He looks as if he’s the same guy who lost public support three years ago.
- Rudd has not won the position with overwhelming support from his caucus colleagues. The vote was 57-45. The party is desperate after long term mauling from the public. Yet, almost half the caucus still couldn’t bring themselves to vote for Rudd.That is no basis to enter an election campaign.
- Rudd doesn’t have enough time. Pundits talk of an early election, before people have time to re-judge Rudd, as if the voters aren’t listening. A cynical early election could catch the first sigh of relief that the Gillard negativity has gone, but it would also reinforce the cynicism and manipulation of Rudd’s former style. The problem for Rudd is that following the crash of his first term, and the crash of Gillard’s following term, the Australian Labor Government has a frame of complete negativity. Nothing has gone right. Every policy or decision has been controversial. Rudd made an effort to jump out of this frame with his acceptance speech that talked about ending the era of decisiveness. But frankly, unless he is able to portray a totally fresh persona, and a zeitgeist-tapping policy set, Rudd doesn’t stand a chance of changing the course of this Government.