Tony Abbott has had a Barry Crocker of a day today. Made to apologise to prominent asbestosis sufferer Bernie Banton, half an hour late for the health policy debate in Canberra at lunchtime because of a photo-op with JWH in Melbourne, and then heard swearing at his opposite number Nicola Roxon after said debate. The Sydney Morning Herald has a recap of the highlights of Bud's Halloween, and I hope to put together a Youtube Do Dia Abbott compilation later tonight.
Meanwhile, let's consider how this clown can be removed from his safe seat of Warringah on November 24.
A North Shore seat encompassing Mosman, Manly and part of Dee Why, Warringah has been held by the Tories ever since the electorate's inception. It would take an 11.3% swing to remove Abbott.
Among his known opponents at this stage (with nominations closing tomorrow), are:
- Hugh Zochling (ALP), an investment business prorietor, local community figure and volunteer lifesaver - about as far removed from the antibusinessunionist Labor caricature as is possible.
- Georgina Johanson (Australian Democrats), who belongs to an organic food co-op, has experience in organising petitions, and sends her children to a Montessori school.
- Conny Harris (The Greens). According to her campaign page, "Conny's crusade against roadkill has galvanised the community".
- and, although I see no confirmation of this yet, Michael Darby for the Christian Democrats. Which is curious as he has been a Liberal apparatchik since time immemorial. An ultra-rightwing one, at that. I can recall him running against Gough Whitlam in Werriwa in 1974. Apparently he has been in every election since, and as far as I can tell he has never won anything. (Update 3/11/07 - Darby isn't running.)
Is Hugh the anti-Abbott that Warringah needs?