Monday 26 March 2012

Bligh's resignation is an act of bastardy

The dramatic and crushing defeat of Labor was one thing, but less than 12 hours after the election result was counted, former Premier Anna Bligh's resignation smacks of enormous arrogance and disdain for the democratic process.

The by-election that will now be called for Bligh's South Brisbane seat, following her shock resignation the day after Saturday's poll, will cost at least half a million dollars.

It's likely that this is another first in Australian political history, where a re-elected MP resigns within hours after the election result.

Anna Bligh said throughout the month-long campaign, if re-elected she would serve the full term.

"It's time to close the book on public life after leading Queensland Labor to such a devastating loss," Bligh said. "I apologise today to the people of South Brisbane for any inconvenience and difficulty that my decision will cause them."

The way the Wivenhoe Dam was fatally mis-managed in the lead up to the floods of 2011; the dirt and false smear campaigning, and a bank balance steering down the barrel at $70 billion debt, are just some of the reasons the public gave up on Labor and Anna Bligh.

"Her resignation comes three years too late for Queensland Labor," expelled Labor member and Labor Electrical Trades Union secretary, Peter Simpson says.

Simpson, who, along with Cairns ETU organiser Stuey Traill, was highly critical of Labor's asset sale programme, said the Party would not have had such a devastating loss in the State election if Bligh had resigned a year ago. Barron River's dumped Labor MP Steve Wettenhall, was one of many that promised there would be no asset sales during the 2009 election, but proceeded in a fire sale after winning office.

Whilst many will appreciate the emotional trauma Bligh and Queensland Labor will be going through, her decision to resign from Parliament and the party leaderships, appears an emotional response more than anything else.

Bligh will not be marching off to CentreLink anytime soon, with a massive $150,000-a-year pension for life, and her husband Greg Withers may be the recipient of more than half a million dollars, if his role at the Office of Climate Change is terminated.

Labor's performance will not only influence voters at the April 28th Council poll, but will be a death knell for Federal Labor.

Political swings of 17% are so rare in modern western democracies, and there is a lot to analyse why so many loyal party faithful had got fed up and decided they too wanted a change.


Michael Weitzmann said...

Even Keith de Lacy recognises the implications for Labor. It seems, he says, torn between different constituencies that are antipathetic to each other; the old working class & the inner city greenish elites. Further, Labor is no longer listening to the people. We need government at all levels that listen to the people & we have seen the begining of this on Saturday. Labor needs to take a long hard look at itself if it is ever to move on from this.

Stuart Traill said...

If the ALP parachute Andrew Fraser or Jackie Trad into the South Brisbane by election they have totally lost the plot. These two were major players in the Privatisation debacle that betrayed the trust of Queenslanders. The only hope is that all ALP MP's that are left are prepared to swallow some pride and rebuild from the grass roots to re establish a Labour movement that listens and represents its core constituents.

Vickie Farquhar said...

Andrew Fraser has stated he will not be standing for South Brisbane.

Eve Stafford said...

I disagree with you on this one Michael. I think the size of the defeat under her leadership, which was unknown before the election, meant Anna Bligh continuing in parliament was untenable for both the ALP that needs to regroup, and for the parliament where she would have become a distraction for the new government charting the future.

Vickie Farquhar said...

I'm inclined to agree with Eve on this. I don't think it was a cavalier attitude at all. We whinge about the payouts politicians get but few of us put our hands up to disrupt our lives the way they do. Sure it could be less but that's a decision for parliament.

Wendy Davie said...

Politicians do not disrupt their lives for politics, politics is their lives. Anna Bligh stood for the seat of South Brisband, won it but hasn't the guts to work out her term. It is totally irresponsible to leave that seat open to the possibility of another win for the LNP, totally irresponsible and somewhat cowardly. The other ALP elected representatives have to face a totally hostile parliament so having been responsible in a large part for this situation Anna Bligh should also.

Community Reformation Action Group (CRAG) said...

What needs to be done now is make Anna Bligh and her crew accountable for numerous human rights crimes against the community ... particularly the slow genocide caused by degregation of our immume system by water fluoridation .