Malcolm Turnbull’s campaign was devoid of passion for the eight tedious weeks it ran. It is a total mystery why it took near-defeat to get him to fire up, show some conviction, and mention Labor’s Achilles’ heels, including the crooked unions.
The only achievement of the double dissolution was a serious decrease in Lower House seats held and a Senate no more likely to be compliant with crucial government legislation.
The whole campaign strategy was a dud and the architects of it couldn’t convince a sailor on shore leave to have a beer.
Steve Atkins, Berowra Heights, NSW
When the PM was giving his speech in the early hours of Sunday morning we saw the real Malcolm.
He did not thank the voters who voted for him, and didn’t say he would do better next time, neither did he thank and commiserate with Coalition MPs who had worked hard, but had lost their seats, and by inference he lambasted the voters for not recognising the brilliance of his economic plan, and thus not electing him with a clear majority.
My prediction is that the PM will in a little while resign, as the real Malcolm will not allow him to serve with fellow parliamentarians and a public who do not appreciate his brilliance.
Comparing the real Malcolm with the authentic Tony makes Tony look really good.
John Lovelock, Kingston, Tas
Life is good, here in schadenfreude-ville. The superannuation changes broke a fundamental compact between citizens and government on retrospectivity. Would the Mediscare campaign have resonated so effectively without this broken trust in the Turnbull government’s integrity?
The super changes also violated core liberal values that aim to reward self-reliance, talent, hard work and thrift. In insisting they were not retrospective, the government played its own supporters for mugs.
In refusing to backtrack, it demonstrated not resoluteness but cussedness. It’s payback time from the voters.
Ramesh Thakur, O’Connor, ACT
The Coalition’s slide in popularity, and its likely lineball result in the election, can be attributed to three factors. First, it failed to capitalise on Turnbull’s popularity and go to the polls late last year. That was a major opportunity foregone, probably because of overconfidence.
Secondly, the seemingly aimless debate about taxation reform, leading nowhere, resulted in doubt about the real resolve of government.
And thirdly, the untruth and fear promulgated by Labor about Medicare did bite hard. The Coalition should have been stronger in countering it.
Michael Schilling, Millswood, SA
After the Labor nonsense about selling Medicare, Turnbull should have immediately unleashed a massive ad campaign claiming Labor and the unions would force every single worker to join a union at a cost of $1000 per year if Shorten had won.
Wet Liberal turn-the-other-cheek garbage might have worked once against crooked lying union bosses and their Labor spin merchants but not any more.
R. Connolly, Blackmans Bay, Tas
Let me get this straight — a liberal PM has been dragged to the right of the political spectrum by extremists in his own party. The election sees the voters pull back to the centre.
So what do the Right-wingers want? The PM’s blood. It’s almost as if they were preparing for this regardless of the election outcome.
Stephen Morgan, Carina Heights, Qld
Peta Credlin has demonstrated on SkyNews during the election campaign that she is cool, calm and talented, which is at odds with the campaign against her leading to the dismissal of Tony Abbott.
The Turnbull campaign has been inept, and could have been improved with her input, and with a greater role for Abbott.
Turnbull has no one else to blame for the outcome but himself. Is he so egotistical that he believed all he had to do was stand in front of the cameras, rambling on about jobs and growth, and voters would flock to him?
The rise of Pauline Hanson and One Nation shows there is a growing number of voters wanting sharper controls on immigration in contrast to the Greens policy of open borders. Abbott provided the Coalition with the ammunition to attract these voters, but Turnbull decided not to use it. Maybe he wanted the campaign to be played under gentlemen’s rules, which is fine if the opposition plays under the same rules. Labor and the union movement clearly showed they were not interested, and for them anything goes.
R. Watson, Sunnybank Hills, Qld
Malcolm Turnbull has had his own David Cameron moment. When you turn your back on your traditional support base, voters will invariably return the favour.
Many conservatives felt disenfranchised in this campaign, hence the support which peeled off the Liberals toward minor parties.
John McLeod, Sunshine Coast, Qld
So the elites of the three major political parties thought it would be a good idea to entrench their own positions by changing the rules to prevent the pesky plebs from voting minor parties and political nobodies into the Senate.
How much more convenient for the elites to once again make the Senate a rubber stamp for whoever is in government.
Well, much to the annoyance of the elites, those pesky plebs proved they do have brains and expertly negotiated the crazy Senate voting forms and new rules to vote in minor parties to hold the balance of power.
Welcome to Brexit Australian style.
John Mann, Angaston, SA
The Coalition only have themselves to blame for this election result. They ran an abysmal one-dimensional campaign based on the monotonous “jobs and growth” mantra. They harped on about the new economy when voters liked the old economy just fine.
They hardly mentioned immigration and national security, the Medicare rebate freeze played into Labor’s hands, and the superannuation changes didn’t help either. They learned nothing from the election losses of Campbell Newman and Denis Napthine.
The Coalition needs to look to Europe and America to see how Right-of-centre parties connect with voters — especially blue-collar workers — and win elections. The centre-Right and the far-Right combined get a majority of the vote in most European countries these days, and they do it by opposing mass immigration, multiculturalism, Islamisation, political correctness, and maintaining a hard-line on law-and-order.
If One Nation voters had voted for the Coalition, Turnbull would have a majority today. Labor wins with Left-wing populism, the Coalition needs to employ some Right-wing populism.
Colin Douglas, St Kilda, Vic
The Turnbull Coalition government should not be surprised by the result of the election.
Why would the party faithful remain true when they are ignored by Turnbull or sneered at from the love-in at the ABC. You can bet your bottom dollar that Shorten didn’t ignore his party base.
Ailsa Lennox, Bulimba, Qld
Turnbull ran a brilliant financial campaign, assuming the election would be decided only by voters inhabiting Pitt Street and the Melbourne club.
Unhappily, the votes of punters in the local pub are just as valuable as those of the silver tails, but the pub issues eluded Turnbull. Bill Shorten realised this. Look at the results.
Malcolm McMurray, St Ives, NSW
Having rolled Abbott as PM, Turnbull inherited the responsibility of re-establishing public confidence in our political system.
Having endured several Abbott broken promises and seven years of Labor recklessness, the electorate was desperately seeking responsible and trustworthy leadership — someone who would keep their word, conduct themselves with honour, and pioneer broad policies with an eye to the future.
Instead, Turnbull immediately took the easy road by targeting the electorate’s hip pocket and coating it all in spin. The character and vision so sorely sought by a frustrated electorate failed to materialise.
The people have now voted with bitter disappointment.
Lou Coppola, Hawthorn East, Vic
Turnbull mounted a long, tiring and divisive double dissolution election on the promise that he would provide stability to Australia. He has delivered instability. He must go.
K. Boyne, Yeronga, Qld