They’re voting in Canberra right now…

Amanda Vanstone was good today…

I flinched when I heard Abbott had told the party room, through last week’s National Press Club speech, that it was the public’s role to “both hire and fire”. I thought this was just a somewhat inelegant and unfortunate way of reminding the party room of the risks associated with changing leaders.

However, comments since then make me think I was being too generous. We do not have an American-style presidential system, where the head of government is elected separately by the people. Ours is chosen by the members of the party with the most seats in the lower house. Everybody knows that, including Abbott.

He is playing hardball with the party room when he puts on the public record his view that a change would make the government seem incompetent, like Labor was. I think that was a mistake. If there is a change, his quotes will be dragged out again and again.

It is probably unintended, but it has a “take me on and I’ll take you down” air to it. He has given the enemy ammunition to use against his own team, unless of course he remains leader.

Cory Bernadi is such a flake!

Jim Belshaw has done a good post.

As I write, the political agony of Australian PM Abbott has entered its immediate end-game. Can Mr Abbott survive? I am not close enough to the numbers to know. I would have thought it unlikely.

As I write, the commentary and reporting outside the fevered analysis of what is happening really centers on two questions: why did this happen; what does it mean?…

And now the ballot is being counted (9.14 am).

And the spill motion failed – 61 overturned it, 39 for.



Mind you that’s a very sizeable minority there who are NOT HAPPY, TONES! No, it ain’t over….