Campbell Newman was right after all, the LNP couldn’t win without Ashgrove. He’s gone and so is his government. I was wrong and Lawrence Springborg will not be premier of Queensland in the morning, though he may be leader of the opposition.
Labor have reversed the landslide of 2012 in three years, something most people expected would take nine or 12 years. Annastacia Paluszczuk has surprised with the strength of her performance and Labor looks like taking 45 or 46 seats – enough for government. In her speech Paluszczuk said the election was too close to call but she clearly hoped to form government. She may wish to bring the Katter Party MPs Robbie Katter and Shane Knuth as well as independent Peter Wellington inside the tent, an experience Wellington has from his days dealing with a Labor minority government in 1998.
Paluszczuk said she had a mandate not to proceed with asset sales and she is right – the issue was toxic for the second election in a row and this time cost the LNP. The KAP is also against asset sales so maybe the new government has the opportunity to be more pro-active with assets like Energex. Labor will have to be frugal but won’t want to be an austerity government so new ways of doing things could be attractive. Campbell Newman seemed new three years ago but proved an arrogant throw back to the Bjelke-Petersen era.
Newman won government from outside parliament in 2012 and lost it and his seat in 2015. His trickery calling a January election failed badly with the electorate who had enough of him and the party he led. His opponent Kate Jones said trust had to earned not bought.
Even former Nationals premier Rob Borbidge on Channel 7 had to overcome revulsion to admit Kate Jones had done well but that Annastacia Palaszczuk had done even better and is more likely to be the next Premier ahead of Newman or any of Newman’s successors.
The LNP did the “hard yards” in government as one of many likely defeated ministers David Crisafulli said tonight. But the electorate has not thanked them for it. Instead it has taken power away from them just as ruthlessly as it stripped Labor in 2012.
This was a great cry of Good-bye Campbell.
Palaszczuk will have a short honeymoon to keep up with the Joneses but let’s give her time to prove herself. The media needs a self-imposed moratorium on ruling in/ruling out questions to contenders like Cameron Dick or Dick needs a way of shutting them up. For now he must support Annastacia Palaszczuk for her shock election win.
Sometimes unconvincing in the campaign, she did well in the debates and stayed on message. She deserves the fruits of unexpected triumph.