Rudd Is Gunning For Gillard

Posted on Thu 07/15/2010 by

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By Andrew Bolt

If you thought American politics was pretty cutthroat, then this probably confirms the belief that even in Australia, those who are currently in senior Government Ministries also need to very carefully watch their backs. Ex PM Kevin Rudd must surely hold some malice for the way he was so comprehensively ‘knifed in the back’ when Julia Gillard took away his ‘job’ as the Prime Minister and leader of the Country, following a ‘coup’ in the night. This is a potential clash of wills in which there’s only going to be one loser, the whole of Australia. Rudd ‘believes’ he is the only one who can do everything.

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Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard

Arthur Sinodinos says Kevin Rudd is stalking Julia Gillard:

Rudd is messing with Gillard’s mind… He is stalking both the Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Stephen Smith. Rudd has made it clear he deserves and expects to get the foreign affairs portfolio after the election. It is his right as a former prime minister.

He is now in Washington, ostensibly attending the Australian American Leadership Dialogue of which he is a founding member. He has been busy lining up appointments with members of the Obama administration. The press has been briefed, allegedly by the American side, that Barack Obama rang him before talking to Gillard. He is running hard for Smith’s job.

Rudd’s future is already destabilising the government: witness the outburst in support of the ex-prime minister by the member for Flynn. More important, consider what could happen if Gillard wins the election.

Foreign Minister Rudd would brook no interference in the portfolio from the Prime Minister or anyone else. Defence could also come more under his sway in the absence of a strong minister such as John Faulkner…

Rudd may well envisage a diarchy in which Gillard reigns supreme on the domestic front while Rudd is the external supremo. This is no Hillary Clinton falling into line behind Obama. More of a co-prime ministership…

Rudd fancies himself. He looks around the room and feels he is the smartest person in it. He consoles himself with the thought that Bill Clinton and Obama have said as much.

With a perspective such as that, imagine meetings of the cabinet’s security committee… Cabinet meetings could become very difficult if Rudd is present to second-guess the Prime Minister.

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Former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd

Once I would have thought that a frightening prospect. But after the past two weeks:

One argument in Rudd’s favour at present is the policy debacle surrounding the on-again, off-again regional processing centre in East Timor for illegal immigrants. Where were Smith and his department when this all-too-clever plot was hatched? Who was consulted about whom to contact in East Timor? Why was the suggestion only casually dropped into a congratulatory conversation between Gillard and the President of Indonesia, our most important near neighbour?

Andrew Bolt is a journalist and columnist writing for The Herald Sun in Melbourne Victoria Australia.

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