I should have got the first prediction up and running on Saturday, but I was busy travelling (I’ve been in Queensland where it is a darn sight warmer than it is here in Melbourne – brrr). Now everyone is saying it, so it doesn’t help for me to say “I said it first”. Anyway, Prediction One is: Our Julia will call the election within a month. Cathy is of the opinion that she will wait and try to get some runs on the board. I don’t think so. She has a number of problems that she has to deal with immediately – one being the Mining Tax (aka Resource Super-Profits Tax). There is a temporary truce on the table, but that isn’t going to last forever. Either she will do a quick deal with the mining companies or it will be a long drawn out affair. I think it will be the latter. For this reason, she will be better to go to the polls now while her personal popularity is high, before everyone see that it is the same government in charge today as it was a week ago.
My second prediction is that we will see less rather than more of the “Prince Consort”, Tim. Already today there is an adverse article on the front page of The Age. The issue here is not that our new PM is “unwed and childless”. As Magda Szubanski points out, so are nuns, and they do a great job. But unlike nuns, Our Julia has a “hanger-on” (as my father-in-law likes to call his grandchildren’s boy-/girl-friends), and – as in families – we don’t quite know what to do with hangers-on. When the family photo time comes, do you include them in the shot or not? Official spouses of those entrusted with the national government and security are easy to handle. They belong. They fit. They have a right to be at their partner’s side because they have made a public sworn committment to them. They are family and so they can take on duties on behalf of the family. Hangers-on are not and cannot. Julia’s “partner” is going to be a problem for her because we don’t know what to do with him. We are not to blame for this. Julia herself has not made her relationship with him clear. Anyway, I think one way or another we will see less of the boyfriend during the election campaign.