Federal Labor powerbrokers have labelled the party’s new leadership selection rules a farce, with the very real prospect that the Opposition Leader may not be a member of parliament.
Under new rules introduced by previous leader Kevin Rudd, 50% of the leadership vote will be decided by caucus, with the remaining 50% decided by public televote.
With the caucus vote likely to be split between Bill Shorten, Anthony Albanese and a three-dimensional printer, it is possible that an outside “micro candidate” may gain sufficient public support to grab the top job. This prospect seems more likely after news that candidates from outside the Labor Party have enlisted Senate election consultant Glenn Druery to maximise so-called “preference harvesting”.
Latest betting markets have Bill Shorten as favourite, closely followed by X Factor‘s Dami Im and Ed from Big Brother. However, bookmakers have warned that things will change radically if a member of One Direction can be persuaded to run.
Former Labor Prime Minister Paul Keating, who is yet to announce if he is contesting the ALP leadership, is thankful that the new rules weren’t around in his day.
“Unless it was a name-calling contest, I couldn’t beat Bob Hawke in anything.”
Whoever wins, Mr Keating hopes that commonsense prevails in the long run.
“The ning-nongs in charge need to realise that being the leader of the ALP isn’t a popularity contest. Until Labor goes back to its core values and makes the biggest bastard its leader, we’ll be fed nothing but turkeys for many Christmases to come.”