December 05, 2012 | Graham

Smart Alex tickles up Newman

It’s a cheap ad, with low production values, but this doesn’t mean it won’t do damage to Campbell Newman.

700 of these ads are supposed to air before Christmas, and they are being partially financed by Clive Palmer.

What is the point? I’m not sure. The ads don’t have a call to action and merely state that Campbell Newman’s claim Douglas asked to be removed as Chair of the Parliamentary Ethics Committee was “untrue”, followed by an allegation that he was sacked because he was “dealing with matters that government did not like”.

Sources have told me a number of things that might help to make more sense of this.

Before the last election Alex Douglas was apparently convinced that Campbell Newman would not win Ashgrove and that he, Douglas, would end up being premier of Queensland. That’s potential motivation for Douglas, but doesn’t explain why you would give him funds for the ads.

There is strong antagonism between Jeff Seeney and Clive Palmer to the extent that it is suggested that while Seeney is Deputy-Premier no project of Palmer’s that requires government approval will get up. That is potential motivation for Palmer.

So perhaps the game plan is to destabilise the government to the extent where enough defect to leave the LNP in opposition. That might happen in a Bond movie, but surely not the Queensland Parliament.

But maybe talk of a new party is a blind. Could the real game be to cause enough havoc that the backbench and some of the ministry decides they need a change of leadership and drop Campbell Newman and Jeff Seeney?

If that happened who would replace them? There isn’t a lot of leadership potential in the LNP, which is how Newman became leader in the first place. Front runner would be Tim Nicholls, but I’m told he’s viewed as too close to Santoro, who is widely distrusted.

That really only leaves Laurence Springborg, the LNP leader who was unlucky not to win the 2009 state election. He’s performing well in his portfolio, so it wouldn’t be out of the question, although I’ve seen nothing to suggest he is actively seeking to lead the party.

If nothing else these ads could give Campbell Newman and Jeff Seeney something to ponder over Christmas.

Posted by Graham at 4:23 pm | Comments (5) |
Filed under: Uncategorized


  1. Vote [1] Graham Young for Premier… 🙂

    Comment by John Humphreys — December 5, 2012 @ 4:59 pm

  2. I don’t buy this new nonsense you are pushing that Douglas wanted to be premier. He just didn’t want Newman trying to claim that HE wanted to step down from head of his committee when he was pushed by Newman and co. There is Newman’s Caltabiano mess in the middle here also. It was Seeney and Nichols who each though THEY would be the next premier when Kate Jones won Ashgrove…

    Comment by John — December 5, 2012 @ 5:21 pm

  3. I think you’re confusing cause and effect John.

    I have no doubt that it would have crossed Seeney and Nichols minds that they might have been premier if Campbell hadn’t made it. Anyone in their positions would have thought the same.

    But Douglas did have those thoughts too, and verbalised them, which is very odd, in his situation, because unlike the other too there could have been no reasonable basis for the hypothesis.

    Comment by Graham — December 5, 2012 @ 9:52 pm

  4. I’ve always thought of Seney as being a self serving and very destructive element in conservative politics. He was the man, who as memory serves, fought tooth and nail against conservative amalgamation in Queensland?
    And replaced, The Leader, Maurice Springborg, who engineered it.
    I don’t know what is going on behind closed doors, with Campbell Newman and very disgruntled back benchers?
    But it’s London to a brick that stirrer Seney is somehow involved; and still wants the top job?
    I don’t know what sort of personality goes out of its way to alienate your largest most generous donor? But surely, it is a highly flawed one.
    And why? Because, would seem, one wants to rein in the power of unrepresentative lobbyists? And what could be wrong with that?
    I believe Clive should put his money where it still might influence the outcomes he wants and is apparently willing to pay for?
    Katter and his hat, the one who says what he thinks, and like Palmer, backs what he believes, with his evocation and or deeds!
    Alan B. Goulding.

    Comment by Alan B. Goulding — December 6, 2012 @ 11:54 am

  5. One must also take with a grain of salt comments by former Liberals suddenly saying bad things about former Nats. It was Hopper saying publicly that Nichols and Seeney didn’t think Newman would win.

    Comment by John — December 6, 2012 @ 1:11 pm

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