By Andrew Bolt ~
Malcolm Turnbull has had the Governor General recall Parliament on April 18 for three weeks to deal with the two blocked bills – to restore the Australian Building and Construction Commission and make union bosses as accountable as business executives of public companies. If those two bills are not passed, there will be an early election.
(He is sniffling badly, which is a poor look. Get the man a hanky.)
The whole thing looks rather desperate. Didn’t the Government last week stop the Senate from considering the ABCC bill? This dramatic move was needed because the Greens made clear they would not call back the Senate early to allow those bills be debated and provide the Government with the excuse for an early double dissolution election.
The Budget will be brought forward to May 3. The election, therefore, will be on July 2 unless the Senate passes the two bills.
These two bills are important. Labor and the Greens in blocking them are acting as political enablers of union corruption, and are doing so to protect donors and mates.
But Turnbull has had very little to say about union corruption and lawlessness, which makes this seem not a bid to reform unions but to get himself the early election he desperately needs.
The lift in the Liberal two-party vote may be no more than margin of error stuff, but the decline in support for Malcolm Turnbull this year is unmistakable and, I suspect, not finished yet:
Malcolm Turnbull’s approval rating as Prime Minister has fallen into negative territory for the first time but voters still rank him overwhelmingly as the best leader to manage the economy and deliver tax reform, and expect him to win this year’s election.
The latest Newspoll, taken exclusively for The Australian, also shows the Coalition has nudged ahead in two-party-preferred terms to lead by 51 per cent to Labor’s 49 per cent due to a slip in support for the opposition…
However, the poll of 2049 voters, taken from Thursday to Sunday, shows satisfaction with Mr Turnbull’s performance has continued its downwards trajectory, falling to 39 per cent…
[It] is now down 14 points this year and down 21 points since peaking at a six-year high for a prime minister of 60 per cent in mid-November.
Like most people surveyed, I still think Turnbull can and should win the next election from here, but he’d better lift his game. The trouble is that he’ll now be so frightened that he’ll go timid and will go into the election with not much mandate for the changes we need – not least to the bloated spending.
Andrew Bolt’s columns appear in Melbourne’s Herald Sun, Sydney’s Daily Telegraph and Adelaide’s Advertiser. He runs the most-read political blog in Australia and hosts Channel 10’s The Bolt Report each Sunday at 10am. He is also heard from Monday to Friday at 8am on the breakfast show of radio station MTR 1377, and his book Still Not Sorry remains very widely read.