Classless Keneally blames Covid & Clive Palmer for losing safe Labor seat
Sunday, 29 May 2022
Peter Fitzsimons interviewed Keneally this week:
He gave her several chances to explain the result.
She could have said Dai Le was too good and ran a strong grassroots local campaign.
She could have agreed, even a bit, that there are lessons to be learned from parachuting an outsider into a safe seat and taking constituents for granted.
No class, no insight and another electoral failure to add to her collection.
Here's an extract from the fireside Fitzsimons chat:
Fitz: Yes, but this time, it was so unexpected. You were parachuted into the seat of Fowler, only for the rip-cord to turn into a broken bit of string, and you were smashed. What went wrong?
KK: The most important factor was COVID and its impacts... Fowler had the harshest and longest lockdowns in the state, supported by both Liberal and Labor, and there was an understandable sense of anger at both major parties, with people reacting with “a pox on both your houses”. At the same time you had a strong independent candidate running, and a wealthy person in Clive Palmer bankrolling the UAP – and while the UAP didn’t win any seats the impact that Palmer had was to drive down major party primary votes and deprive the major parties of Senate seats and preferences in lower house seats.
Fitz: Can we agree, given the result, the idea was wrongheaded? And that the central problem was you really weren’t from Fowler. And in a strongly multicultural community, you went up against a very strong local opponent in Dai Le, who looked like what she was, a real member of that local community, while you looked like what you were, a wealthy white woman from distant parts parachuted in?
KK:As I said, I think the impact of the COVID lockdowns had far more to do with it, and was far more at play on the day. Those harsh lockdowns engendered an understandable sense of parochialism that the community had been left behind by both major political parties. And I genuinely believe that whether the Labor Party ran me or anyone else in Fowler, they would have encountered the same set of challenges.