April 23, 2003

THE Australian Labor Party is

THE Australian Labor Party is in meltdown, which is a stunning achievement for something already molten and ruined:

Federal Opposition Leader Simon Crean today accused former Labor leader Kim Beazley of destabilising the party.

Mr Crean said his predecessor had failed to show him the respect he offered Mr Beazley as deputy ALP leader.

"I don't think he's shown respect ... when I was his deputy I was totally loyal and showed him respect when there were times when I disagreed with his judgment," Mr Crean told Melbourne radio station 3AW.

"I got behind him. That's what deputies do."

The latest division was sparked by the most recent edition of The Bulletin, which included these thoughts from Graham Richardson:

During his travails in the 1980s there was a front page of The Bulletin emblazoned with the headline "Mr 18%". This was a reference to Howard's abysmal performance in the úpreferred-PM poll. The whole world knew that at this level of support his leadership was dead in the water. Last week, the Newspoll reported Crean's ratings had sunk even lower. He has finally set a record that even his most timid colleagues can't ignore. A figure of 16% compared with Howard's thumping 62% is just plain horrible.

Posted by Tim Blair at April 23, 2003 11:48 AM