Rudd needs to remind us why we elected him
The Punch’s unscientific Punters Poll is broadly in line with most of the “scientific” research – the PM is broadly popular and people think he’s the smartest kid in the class.
That’s probably what happens when you beat the GFC, reorganise global diplomatic structures and can explain all it in Mandarin.
While no politician admits to reading polls, Kevin Rudd would be quietly satisfied with these findings – 58 per cent saying he has delivered on expectations, with strong support for his economic management.
These are two of the dangers areas for any new leader – the perception that he talks big before an election but fails to deliver, and the sense that once he gets there he is not up to the task.
Management of the economy is an important challenge and one that Liberals normally have a natural advantage over.
One of the unreported stories of Rudd’s first term is the way he has trumped the Coalition on economic management.
But there are few storm clouds brewing – principally concern over debt levels, the political free kick that the Liberals are struggling to capitalise on.
Concern with debt is the major source of dissatisfaction – a problem that is likely to grow as stimulus spending continues over the coming months.
Apart from debt, my only concern if I were in the PM’s office would be the lack of any public narrative around the government.
Where is the engagement on climate change or his restoration of workers rights?
Where is the - dare I say it - passion?
And what is it with the observations he is “small”? Is this about stature or vision?
Politics, like nature, abhors a vacuum, and while its fine to be the brightest kid in the room, people want to see you using the grey matter.
For mine, the challenge for Rudd in consolidating on these results is drive into 2010 with an issue that captures the public imagination and reminds us why we made him class captain.
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