The unpopular crowd

You could fill a dictionary with the array of adjectives currently attached to our federal politicians, few of the complimentary.

However, despite the role call of misogynists, alleged fraudsters and rugby league fans, the one sin you can’t accuse our parliamentarians of is populism.

Sure, the ALP may have downgraded the Greatest Moral Challenge of Our Time once punters realised saving the planet would take more than turning the lights of for an hour. But if both major parties really were slaves to popular opinion then the looming election certainly wouldn’t be a contest between Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard.

If all the faceless men cared about was what the mouthbreathers in Western Sydney thought then Kevin Rudd would be in the Lodge faster than you could say  “progammatic specificity”.

Similarly, if the blue tie cabal wanted to reach beyond the Liberal Party’s current demographic of boat-fearing denial monkeys then Malcolm Turnbull is waiting to take their call. I’m sure the producers at Q&A have his number.

In the case of the Labor party, it is not just Julia Gillard and her supporters who are making the courageous decision to stand firm against the tide of public sentiment.

The ABC and News Ltd have quoted unamed sources who claim Kevin Rudd has the numbers but refuses to challenge the Prime Minister.

If that is the case, what on earth is he waiting for? Bill Shorten to say his name three times in to a mirror at midnight?

I suppose we should be happy our political leaders are actually leading from the front and not mindlessly following the whims of the people at home at 2pm on a Tuesday who answer the pollsters’ phone calls.

But spare a thought for supporters of gay marriage.

After watching both sides jump on chase the votes of xenophobes, property investors and sports fans,  the same time public support for their cause reaches a majority just happens to coincide with both Gillard and Abbott rediscover conviction politics and ensure a bill on marriage equality fails.

No, our politicians aren’t “popular” in either sense of the word.


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