Australian Federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has gone on the attack by going after Deputy Prime Minister Julia Gillard after the Prime Minister Kevin Rudd made a mini-reshuffle to his Ministry.
Abbott has claimed that Gillard is overworked and overstretched and should ha ve some of her many responsibilities taken off her. Gillard’s title is Deputy Prime Minister, Minister for Education, Employment & Workplace Relations, Social Inclusion but I have no doubt the Deputy Prime Minister is one of the few people who could actually manage such a large portfolio.
This is the latest in a long-runnning war between Gillard and Abbott, but I think Abbott’s attacks are misplaced. For starters, he is shooting down, which is always a mistake for a Leader. We all remember the criticism of Obama when the Democrats went after Sarah Palin during the 2008 Presidential Campaign. Abbott should be going for Rudd and Rudd alone and letting the rest of his team go for Gillard.
They have also attacked Gillard before on a personal level and it back-fired badly. Earlier in the year, Gillard questioned Coalition
statements about parenting, when Senator Brandis stated Gillard couldn’t “understand the way parents think” about virginity because she doesn’t have kids.”
While that didn’t hurt Abbott too much as he was still well into his honeymoon, there was a fair outcry as to the remarks.
Finally, the Australian people like Gillard. In an Essential Report poll from the 22nd of March, Gillard beat Abbott 47-37 as preferred Prime Minister. The people also don’t like Abbott when he is being overtly confrontational, as was
shown in the results of the recent Health Debate, which the Prime Minister clearly won.
So Abbott has to decide if his strategies are right, because they’ve attacked Gillard before and it hasn’t worked. This is probably just a one-off attack to coincide with the PM’s mini-reshuffle, but the Coalition have to be wary.