The political implications of the events in Canberra in the past few days are being felt nationwide. Regardless of who you believe should be in power, there is no question that it has created an uncertainty about the short and long term future, which is being felt immediately.
- In Australia we vote for a party, not a leader. Every leader will put their stamp on things, however ultimately it is a party who are responsible for the decisions made. Changes in leadership especially late in the game should not have a real impact in judging performance. The reality is also that this leadership change is a change a back. The complication being we don’t know who will make up the party given the spate of resignations. The political implications of any ‘real’changes at this point are that the public are being asked to judge them almost as a new government. The problem here is we did not elect this new government. Any changes should be a matter for the electorate.
- With the mass exodus of Labor and Independent politicians this week, locally many electorates do not know who the local candidates are to represent their interests. If point one is true (which it is) then does it matter who the individuals are (so long as there are checks and balances in places to vet them – that is a debate for another time)? The political implications of the mass exodus are that we don’t know how these new people will vote in the party room. Can we guarantee there will not be another leadership spill at some point. The so called ‘faceless men’ are really that at the moment, because not even they know who they are yet.
- We have been in campaign mode already for a record period, isn’t it time the public decided? If we are judging the governments performance, then as mentioned in point one, a change in leader does not matter. If we are to factor in a new leader with different ideas then this is even more reason to go to the polls now. The political implications of having a government operating which is different to the one elected should be a great deal of concern to the community. The election should happen as quickly as possible. This is an unusual situation to say the least where we had a date announced some time ago, it is not a matter of ‘politics’ and ‘strategy’, it is a matter of being fair to the public.
The political implications for either party on the timing of the election can be debated by political experts like Antony Green from the ABC. The fact of the matter is Australia is the one suffering.
The reality is most people (sad as this is for me) will not read this blog. They will go to the polls and vote on the leader not the party. Many, possibly most, will not judge policies. Everything we thought was going to happen at the polls is now in chaos.
Where does this leave the business sector and indeed the not-for-profit sector? How can you build strategic plans if you don’t know who is going to be in charge. How can you even operate properly when you don’t know what the person in charge right now is planning?
Government policy has a real impact on both the business and not-for-profit sector. The latter in particular who is reliant on them for funding. Right now those organisations who are wondering about whether they are to be refunded next year do not know how to shape their arguments and to whom. The longer this campaign drags on the harder it gets for a sector already struggling to find the funds to operate.
To whoever is reading this I say, I hope you now understand the political implications so; ask for an election now, ask for the parties to quickly nominate replacement candidates for those seats where members have resigned, vote for the party, look at the current policies and don’t just disregard everything because of a change in leadership. Make an informed vote.
Let’s hope the political implications do not increasingly become economic sustainability issues for everyone.