Australians have 33 days to decide, with a date announced for the federal election.
Kevin Rudd has announced that Australia will head to the polling booths on Saturday 7 September, leaving just the obligatory minimum 33 days for election campaigning.
Visiting the Governor General, Quentin Bryce, yesterday, Kevin Rudd has put an end to speculation on the date of the Federal Election. Following protocol, the Governor General must issue a writ at least 33 days prior to the agreed date and this she did, with just one day to spare.
Just days after announcing that the amended budget predictions would see Australia with a $30.1bn deficit, Kevin Rudd outlined the economic landscape facing the country and has asked that voters allow Labor to "Manage the big economic challenges which lie ahead." In an email to Labor Party supporters, the Prime Minister asked everyone to “chip in $5” to help his campaign, which he referred to as being “one hell of a fight”.
Opposition leader Tony Abbott accepted the challenge with gusto, asking Australians not whom they trusted, but “Who can you rely on to be build a better future? "Who do you think is more fair dinkum?" he said.
A Seven News/Reachtel poll last night put voters in the Coalition's camp, with the party ahead on 52 per cent, compared to Labor’s 48 per cent in the two-party preferred vote. Tony Abbott is marginally ahead in the prime minister stakes, with a two per cent better polling compared to Kevin Rudd’s 49 per cent. And the Coalition also trumped Labor on the economy, with the poll falling 60/40 per cent in its favour.
With the advantage of knowing in advance what date he had planned for the election, Kevin Rudd challenged Tony Abbott to a debate on Sky News tonight and has offered each of the networks a Sunday debate. Tony Abbott would only say he was open to negotiation on having more than one campaign debate.
Read more at www.ABC.net.au/news.
Watch Tony Abbott’s response to election date announcement.
In Kevin Rudd’s own words, or at least those of a savvy media advisor, “It’s on”, ‘It’ being the 2013 federal election, a whole week earlier than we previously thought.
Proving that he’s his own man and in perhaps his last act of defiance against the Labor Party, which was led by Julia Gillard, Kevin Rudd has called a federal election seven days earlier than the 14 September date earmarked by his predecessor. Petty? That’s for you to decide.
What is apparent is that Kevin Rudd is embracing his Government’s mistakes, on the economy and the party in-fighting, and is playing the humble card by admitting he is indeed “the under dog’. But what we must remember is that this position is not the work of Kevin Rudd himself, but the media advisors who helped President Barrack Obama secure his second term in office.
In asking Labor supporters to “chip in $5” to help with his campaign, he is not only stealing a very clever idea used by Obama in his recent battle to the Whitehouse, but he is also reverting to the class warfare rejected by senior Labor MPs. By stating that "Abbott and a few millionaires will out-spend us", Rudd is trying to assure voters that Labor is serious about the economy, understanding that this is not the time to be seen spending big.
Attacking Tony Abbott’s negativity, Rudd said that he would “bang on with the same negativity that we're all sick of.” Meanwhile, he himself has a "positive plan”, which will provide help for manufacturing and ease cost of living pressures. This I cannot wait to hear and can only question why he has kept it to himself for so long.
The only positive I can see right now is that we at last have an end in sight. Yes, we will continue to be subjected to the same inane dribblings and pot-shots as we have for the last three years, but now they will have a purpose, to convince Australia that they really do have a ‘choice’ of who will be our next Prime Minister. And we only have 33 days to listen to each side extol their own virtues with little regard for the serious issues facing the country.
Is 33 days enough for each side to truly address the issues which will decide this election? Or have you already made up your mind who will be getting your vote?
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