The Herald Sun today reports that Tony Abbott is warning his colleagues not to succumb to the temptation of “believing they would win.”
That article, by Phillip Hudson, is here. It’s full of the usual Abbott rhetoric, faithfully reported, along with talk of Kevin Rudd (of course). That can only be there to take attention away from the fact that the latest Newspoll results show Julia Gillard is once again Australia’s preferred Prime Minister, despite (or perhaps because) of the attack-dog politics the Coalition has employed over the past couple of years.
But hang on a minute. Wind back the clock to the beginning of March this year; at the Queensland Liberal National Party state launch, Abbott was introduced as “the next PM” and made the following bold statement:
“Stephen Smith and Bill Shorten and now Bob Carr might think that they're the next prime minister of
Australia, but I think I'll be the
next elected prime minister.”
Off the cuff? A throw-away line? Maybe. But as this Michelle Grattan article in the SMH shows, it was a sign that Abbott believes the top job is his.
Only now he doesn’t.
Or does he?
It’s hard to be sure. Both of these statements, made less than three months apart, were delivered verbally... and as Abbott himself said two years ago (again reported by Phillip Hudson), not everything he says is the “gospel truth.”
This from the man who repeatedly calls Gillard a liar.
Maybe we shouldn’t believe that either.