17 July 2010
After three weeks and two days as Prime Minister, Julia Gillard is heading to the polls.
The decision not to allow more time to establish authority in the office reflects the nervousness in this Labor Government that saw it dump a first term Prime Minister when things looked dicey.
It also reflects the fact the last three weeks have hardly been smooth.
The mining tax row still hasn't been settled with the whole industry, Labor's asylum seeker policy remains a thought bubble and divisions over the way Kevin Rudd was brought down have resurfaced already.
And that's before Julia Gillard even attempts to produce a climate change policy - something bound to cause consternation in the ranks.
Hard heads in the government have determined it's better to go now than risk things getting worse.
They're also keen to throw some focus on Tony Abbott, who's successfully played a small target strategy for months.
This campaign will be fascinating.
Neither Julia Gillard nor Tony Abbott have led their parties in a campaign before.
Both are very different political animals.
And both are yet to define any reform areas they want to pursue.
In fact it's still unclear what this election is really about.
The odds and polls are with Labor, but the resentment with this government in key seats is yet to be put to the test.
Comments are moderated and will not appear until they have been approved.
natalie Woodley, Victoria. (6 August 2010 9:59PM) wrote:
Does no one work at moderating this blog? we are in the middle of possibly the most important election of my life time? No wonder Bolts Blog is so popular. Rupert Murdoch would not be happy to have such slack staff. You seem more like A.B.C. bureaucrats than people working for private enterprise.
natalie woodley, Victoria (4 August 2010 11:58PM) wrote:
You have allowed slurs re Tony Abbott on this blog, so I assume my blog will be printed.The media hid from the Australian voter what they knew of Rudd prior to the last election,Australia is now suffering the consequences. They are doing exactly the same with Ms Gillard this election. The Australian voter have a right to know that this woman, promoting herself to be elected P.M. of this country, is a Home wrecker. Emerson a Minister of the Crown was on Q and A (a.b.c.) on Monday night, when he advised how well he knew Julia the audience erupted with leers, wolf whistles, it was extremely ugly, as many people in the room obviously knew of their past relationship. Later he advised he knew Julia was "very lively", the audience again errupted. When it was Hewson who left his wife and family the Australian media believed their was "a right to know" could someone, anyone, please explain why their IS NOT a need to know re Gillard and Emerson, I believed we now had equality of the sexes, perhaps that's only when it suits women like Gillard.
Carstairs, Newcastle (3 August 2010 6:01PM) wrote:
As we must soon be approaching some real discussion on the NBN I would really like you and your colleagues to keep asking the question as to when Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane will see the NBN in action in their cities. My understanding is the overall project is set at 8 years so someone has to wait till 2018 before they see any benefits. That is of course failing the development of even more alternatives than those already available now. 8 years is a long time in IT. Maybe the ALP has a plan to force all government users to sit and await the NBN's arrival rather than take advantage of more efficient and cheaper alternative. Please keep asking the question and insist on real answers.
juggernaut, Melbourne (3 August 2010 2:13AM) wrote:
I have been following the political debate as presented by David Spears and he must be congratulated on his courage to ask tough questions, extoadinary professionalism and balanced reporting. I have watched David Spears on Sky for years and can't work out which way he leans. This can't be said for any other political journalist. Kieren Gilbert however conducts himself like a Labor operative.
Lou Lou, sydney (2 August 2010 7:23PM) wrote:
The Labor govt has proven to be a rather unsavoury lot with a record for massive financial mismanagement. They've got union money to burn for ad campaigns and will do what it takes to win but they shouldn't get another chance to run this country. Julia Gillard is an embarrassment both in her private life and in her public persona. She's a spinmeister with little substance. I suspect she means well; she just doesn't have what it takes. If she moves into the lodge with First Bloke we'll be a laughingstock on the world stage. Imagine, a live in uneducated boyfriend with a criminal record. Is this what you call aiming for the stars Julia! Heaven help this country.
Jason Elton, Brisbane (2 August 2010 6:18PM) wrote:
Re media coverage reporting Tony Abbott's direct line to Nauru. With so many bright sparks involved with your election coverage I wonder is it not ironic that a supposedly reformed climate change denier such as Tony Abbott is prepared to continue to allocate millions of tax payers funds to a Nation that likely faces a direct risk from climate change. The eventual result of which being that Nauru's entire population are likely to themselves become refugees and will be seeking asylum. Makes me wonder has a deal already been done, if the reverse phone call came from the Nauru PM I wonder if MR Abbott will take that call?? I am even more curious as to whether anyone has the courage to pose the question??
Scott, Qld (2 August 2010 4:56PM) wrote:
My god David, I was just watching you and the respective Labor and Coalition commentators and the Labor commentator said the Abbott lives in the past and quoted something that Abbott said back in 79 some 31 years ago....Could you please point out to him that maybe they are living in the past....My god I can't believe he would even bring something up from so long ago and I really don't think it is at all helpful to the Labor party who Campaign is all about "Moving Forward" I think this shows blatantly clear they live in the past.
oz_eagle, sydney (2 August 2010 4:55PM) wrote:
Mr Speers, You might like to pass on the message to both Hawker, Howes and co. that Labor smells from top to bottom. No amount of spin is going to save this inept bunch of monkeys. Give them a banana or two and tell them to go away.
Liz, Adelaide (2 August 2010 10:32AM) wrote:
Journos please - I am hearing how great Kevin was in the job, yet no one seems to have asked the question - why did they get rid of him then. Labout say they are not poll driven yet their very actions at deposing Kevin when all indicators showed them in a poor election winning position shows excactly the opposite. Julia Gillard makes much of her questioning the Pensioner increase and how responsible she was to do that, where was her same scrutiny on the huge financial blowout on her failed schools building scheme. As a swinging voter, I know where my pendulum is going to swing this time.
Paul Talbot, Nth Tamborine Qld (1 August 2010 6:55PM) wrote:
A 30year old on average wage, say $700 a week, rising to say $1500 a week over 35 years to retirement, will in that time earn roughly 1.8million dollars...x9%=$162000, x12%=$216000...a difference of $54000, not $110000
gary kirwan, gympie QLD (1 August 2010 8:36AM) wrote:
WOW, i used to watch you and thought you were a fair unbiased commentator.. but during this elction coverage, i am disgusted, by the bias you are showing towards the liberal party..... i know you have to keep up ratings, but to sacifrice youre credability.. i feel so sad, that the once great david speers, is now nothing but a liberal stooge.... prove me wrong its never to late david... i know this post will never see the light of day.. but i feel better....
Happychik, Regional NSW (1 August 2010 6:27AM) wrote:
What scares me more about Tony Abbott becoming PM is Julie Bishop becoming Deputy PM...Tony Abbott is going to take our Public Hospitals backwards were going to end up like the US, now that's really scary.
Sara, Melbourne (31 July 2010 11:42PM) wrote:
David Oldfield is a total embarrassment - not intellectually up to it - spare us all and don't Peter Van have him on again!
Natalie Woodley, Diamond Creek. (31 July 2010 10:27PM) wrote:
We read posts where people don't like seeing Mark Latham interviewed, advising "he has no loyalty to the Labour Party", you are seriously joking aren,t you, Loyalty is definitely not a hallmark of the Labour Party. Do yourself a favor, read Betrayal by Simon Benson (On Sky today), he writes all about loyalty? in the Labour Party, the Sussex Street boys who have taken over the party machine. These people have nothing to do with Old Labour, policies they are only interested in marketing, photo ops, sound ites, in fact politicking. That way they retain the power to stay on the Australian Taxpayer Gravy Train, insure their MOITES do also. We are told David eats, lives and breathes politics?? David when you have done that for over 50 years, as have I, and many others, perhaps you will have a broader perspective, better judgement.
Natalie Woodley, Victoria (31 July 2010 10:15PM) wrote:
David having just read your December article "Abbott shouldn,t be too exited"?? Do you ever stop and think how little you know of people living out in the 'real world'. You advise Gillard and Abbott are different political animals, you are right for once. Abbott has INTEGRITY in spades, Gillard is totally devoid of it, as I suspect are many of you journalists. Are you still on the wrong horse? your predictions and comments, in the main, show you to be clueless.
CARMEN, SYDNEY (31 July 2010 2:00PM) wrote:
I would like to ask, David, WHY are you, Keiren Gilbert and most of the reporters on Sky News soooo Labor fixated when you know very well what absolute FAILURES, untrustworthy, peanuts they really are? I thought that you guys would be pretty savy in Australian politics - sorry to say, however, that you are coming across as being naive and failing to do your duty in reporting the truth. Stop being so bias towards this good for nothing Labor idiots and place your trust, for a change, in a worthwhile person like Tony Abbott, who will not only do the right thing by our country, but also for it's people. Please don't look so unhappy (all of you) when things don't go right for a fake like Julia Gillard -she is a callous politician, not credible, lacking in core principles and certainly one, who I would not like to have represent my country. So to all of you - WAKE UP AND DO NOT BE FOOLED BY HER - she is definitely TOO smart for you all.
Moira, Melbourne (31 July 2010 1:57PM) wrote:
Mark Latham should stay under the rock he came out of WHY is sky bringing this bitter bitter man out to spew his vile comments on Labor. And to Natalie on fox news well don't know where you get that Fox news and Sean Hannity Glen Beck and others are the most unbiased and balanced as it is the most unbalanced and unfair channel i have ever seen or heard. Tea party activists that spew as much hate as Mark Latham.
kohlman, melbourne (31 July 2010 8:46AM) wrote:
How can professional journalists agree with the way our politics are going..grubby..They may say Kevin Rudd was knifed, but haven't they heard that the pen is mightier than the sword.. What about ethics......He who throws dirt looses ground...
bill henderson, Brisbane (31 July 2010 8:11AM) wrote:
David Speers would be so much better if he listened carefully to the answers of his guests. And when they do not answer his question, to repeat the question, if they continue to refuse to answer - simply record that thay are refusing to answer the question and move on. David interviewed the Minister for communications recently and asked him when Brisbane, Sydney etc would get the High Peed Broadband. He asked the question twice and appeared to accept the answer. The Minister had not even come close to answering the question. There seems little point in asking questions if you are happy that they are not answered. One other point- it seems absolutely amazing to me that you ask when we will get the High speed Broadband- do not get an answer- and are apparently not interested in how much it is going to cost the customer_ what EXACTLY are they going to get for $x per month.
john , WA (30 July 2010 1:52PM) wrote:
Have noticed that journos wont allow PM Gillard to talk policy as keeps getting interrupted with questions about Rudd. Rudd is yesterdays man so why during an election campaign give preference to that over the future direction of the Government. Tony Abbott seems to get a free run from Sky and others and I don't object to that but it should equally apply to Julia Gillard. It seems like all the Murdock media are operating this way and its not being fair.
Jim Kamangar, Sydney (30 July 2010 1:46PM) wrote:
Hi David, if noone from senior members of the labour party is going to defend Mr. Rudd, that means they are agreeing with Mark's Remarks. Good Day
Kaylyn Withenshaw, Burwood. Vic (29 July 2010 10:09PM) wrote:
The whole election is controlled by the media. The media is attempting to influence public opinion. The media must remember that the votors decide the party that should run this country. Give the votors the respect. Media is controlled by big bisiness.
sue, sydney (29 July 2010 9:55PM) wrote:
Tony Abbott talks about telling his daughters about their virginity being a gift. Apart from being very creepy does he peach, do as i say not as I do!!! remember he need a DNA test to confirm he wasn't someones father when he had sex outside marriage.
m. baskerville, perth (29 July 2010 1:37PM) wrote:
David, I enjoyed both of the interviews with Mark Latham. He has certainly given us an insight into the inner workings of political parties. Would it be possible to get Bill Shorten on for an interview? I would like to see what he has to say about the knifing of Kevin Rudd, especially as Mr. Rudd stood by him during his diabolical personal situation, allowing him to stay in politics. I would like the public to see what Mr Shorten is really like. Could you also please ask him about his person stance on morals and ethics seeing he has none at all personally or politically. Thank You.
Bruce, Sydney (28 July 2010 10:08PM) wrote:
Hey Sven, Mark Latham was the Leader of the Opposition but he never was PM thank god.
P. Ritchie, qld (28 July 2010 12:41PM) wrote:
It's simple. The Liberals only have to run a simple tv advert showing Mr Rudd;s campaign poster with a banner across saying "this man trusted the Gillard government, .. why can't you?
Peter, Stretton Qld (28 July 2010 7:57AM) wrote:
Without sounding over simplistic: We pay our taxes to the people we elect. Those pollies are entrusted to properly "spend / manage" that money, "the poeples money". The basic crux of the matter is: Why would any right minded person reelect the very people who are have absolutely wasted that money & have now given the voters a debt which they have to pay back! What if your accountant or fund manager did this to you, would you use them again?! I'm sick of Labor overtly conning the paople. My local polly is Dr Craig Emerson "Dr Spin". Its pathetic.
Marc, Sydney (26 July 2010 10:28PM) wrote:
The amazing thing has been the total absence by Gillard in actually believing in anything meaningful, she has obviously been told to avoid offending anyone - it doesn't work and is not believable.
Peter , Coffs Harbour (26 July 2010 5:08PM) wrote:
Typical for you to allow Gillard not to answer some questions last night your blatant bias towards Labor is disgraceful. Can't you atleast find someone other than A Labor party lapdog to give an opinion. Today you dug up the pathetic Bob Carr. Hawker Britton is beyond a disgrace and you have the pathetic Peter Van onslow or what ever that Left wing lunatics name is. Some balance please its bad enough your so called news is so uninformative towing the politically correct line rather than dealings with issues which matter to us people living in the real world. You clowns really live in some sort of dorkey world. Thank God for the radio during the day which actually gives people real information. Remember we are paying you for the news not Left wing propaganda. You even push this Global warming/Climate change crap, how stupid are you people ? Maybe one day you guys could ask Gillard and Labor a tough question instead of being there cheer squad. Keep doing what Labor tells you and look forward, don't look back on the trail of disaster. Could you tell us of a worst Government in Australias history, no I did not think so.
Rod Dominish, Brisbane (26 July 2010 4:13PM) wrote:
Julia Gillard has lost a million computers promised as part of the Rudd/Gillard Digital education Revolution. They got the cost wrong in 2007 Now they cannot deliver The education revolution does not compute
Apostrophe Police, Brisbane (26 July 2010 8:49AM) wrote:
Speersy! As last night's moderator I hold you responsible for the backdrop announcing a "Leaders Debate" rather than a "Leaders' Debate". Where was your red pen?
R Seal, Emu Heights NSW (25 July 2010 10:46PM) wrote:
Once again we have a leaders debate and again the Pro Labour media come up with a Labour Win, This seems to be the norm,on Every debate that has been held since its inception, when you look at the results of the phone in on Sky. the result of the viewers is never made available to the larger viewers on Sky. i have again looked at the early results on Sky, And again they are showing 76% 24% in favour of the Liberals TONY ABBOTT, How about making this imformation available to the Sky viewers who take the time and effert to take part in your poll, in the name of Fair play.
Judy, Gold Coast (25 July 2010 3:58PM) wrote:
You, the Media have a lot to answer for, ie the 'love affair' with Gillard & in not telling us voters about the ADF having to relocated to substandard housing whilst the A/Seekers take the ADF homes. also, the Citzens; Assembly?? I thought that's why we elected Members to Parliament to ascertain from us voters?? and then you hve the 'Sweet deals' done with the Greens for the Lower House, in turn to the Greens for the Majority in the Senate. Which Country will Gillard negotiate with next to stop the A/Seekers?? And the lies/spin just continue from this Labor Government.
Janine, Vic (25 July 2010 1:03PM) wrote:
I don't understand why during a debate a Leader is not held to actually answer the question put to him/her? Does the Australian public not deserve to have questions honestly answered and not dodged? And if not, could David make clear to the public that the particular question 'has not been answered'? Most Australians are more intelligent than they believe and are tired of the lack of honesty.
had, sydney (25 July 2010 9:34AM) wrote:
watching the interviews you are doing i am surprised you have the guts to allow some of the truths come out I believe the media that means you and your lot have to take some of the blame for the country not moving on in some sort of positive direction and keep aus in touch or ahead of the rest of the world
philip j menz, south australia (24 July 2010 6:19PM) wrote:
I just wish that someone out there would listen to me,but as much as I have tried none of the main pollies have even taken the time to get back to me I have even tried to make contact with mr speers from sky news australia to no avail and I suppose even me writting to this blog will not make it past the people that run it but I can only hope. I have a disability and have so all my life I have never complained much but every body seems to be worrying about the boats and the fear that the big end of town is going to stop mining that is not true look at the money they would not be able to put in their pockets if they closed the mines THINK ABOUT IT... People with all kinds of disabilitys are really suffering some are only getting a shower once a week some can not even go out because they have not got what they need, WE ARE TOLD ALL THE TIME THAT THERE IS NO MONEY... I just want all you so called able body people out there to just think for a minute WHAT WOULD YOUR LIFE BE LIKE WITH A DISABILITY..... AND EVERYONE IS JUST ONE STEP AWAY FROM HAVING A DISABILITY. THANKYOU FOR LETTING ME HAVE MY SAY PHILIP J MENZ
jo, New Zealand (23 July 2010 6:04PM) wrote:
Hey Aussies,do yourselves a favour and vote Labour out of office.we did it here in NZ and we are much better off as a result.
clara, camden (23 July 2010 11:23AM) wrote:
David, will you be putting the video of your interview with Mark Laham onto this site? Mark said some really thought provoking stuff and created some terrific 'Lathamism' - loved the comment about Julia mastering the art of narrowism. We would love to share it with some of our friends and students who don't have foxtell.
M. Hewson, Sydney (22 July 2010 3:01PM) wrote:
David, I disagree with Geoff Hunter, great interview with Mark Latham. Always the colourful character he is, adding some spice to the campaign. Good luck on Sunday night!
Sven Goransson, Brisbane (22 July 2010 12:06PM) wrote:
Would the dismissal of Kevin Rudd have been a fair dismissal under the new Industrial Relations Law?
Y. Logan, NZ (22 July 2010 10:36AM) wrote:
Why interview an ex Prime Minister like Mr Latham. He should be left in the past. He certainly has no loyalty to the Labour Party. I have not seen any interviews with all the ex leaders of the Liberals as yet. Hope Ms Gillard remains Prime Minister after your elections.
Geoff Hunter, Melbourne (21 July 2010 9:19PM) wrote:
David you have lost credibility in continually interviewing Mark Latham who has no scruples whatsoever.
Rob Willett, Australia-Sydney (21 July 2010 8:18AM) wrote:
And member of the Labor Party? Clearly totally enamoured by Ms Gillard. Your coverage is so biased, I need facts, not biased opinions, you should come out and identify your vested interest in the left of politics. Appalling.
james, forster (19 July 2010 8:35PM) wrote:
Can Julia Gillard guarantee that she will be the Leader of the Labor party for 3 years if Labor win - I think not.
John Harvey, Dallas (19 July 2010 4:09PM) wrote:
Pinocchio Gillard Moving forward. The only thing that is moving forward is your nose from all the lise etc
John Watt, Brisbane (18 July 2010 9:09AM) wrote:
The joke about our representative democracy is that we the people get 5 weeks to listen to politicians spin about what they may do in the next 156 weeks. We are supposed to be a democracy in which the country is governed by the people for the people. Who knows what will happen in the next 3 years? Yet we are supposed to make that decision now. We are being asked to make some sort of assessment of the politicians who we feel might do a better job over the 3 years but we, and they, don't know what the job really entails. It has to be time to get some form of electronic system that gives all of the population a chance to have a say on the real issues as they arise. The current system satisfies about 50% of the people on the basis of a 5 week spin contest once every 156 weeks.You can't run a business that way let alone a country!!
natalie woodley, Victoria (17 July 2010 10:18PM) wrote:
David could you please show your viewers some respect by having fair and balanced commentators throughout the campaign. Hawker is yesterdays man a Labor aparatchik always talking up the people who fund his life style. To suggest that "the bitchy," thwarted John Hewson gives a balanced view of the conservative side of politics, is to treat your viewers with disdain. I assume your polls give you an idea of who your viewers are, presently 67% advise they are voting coalition, so lift your game. David you yourself are so blatantly Labour, you can,t even hide it. YOU really should view some Fox news, see what fair and Balanced is, if you are partisan (as you are) like Sean Hannity have the honesty to declare who you are. His panels are excellent, try it.
Peter Richards, Melbourne (17 July 2010 7:11PM) wrote:
Everything indicates a Labor victory, official polls, betting odds etc. Why do the online polls today (I've looked at Sky News, Australian, Herald Sun & a Qld newspaper) generally show 2/3 for Coalition and 1/3 for Labour? Sorry David, not making a strong point here, just curious. How is it?
Leon, Lalor Park (17 July 2010 9:51AM) wrote:
I hope Tony Abbott (in his press confrence) doesn't bring up a knived in a back comment, cause he knived Turnbull in the back to become leader of the Liberal Party last year.