Kevin Rudd’s authorized biographer has written a scathing open letter to the former Prime Minister asking him to forget his leadership ambitions once and for all.
In an extraordinary attack published on ABC online, Robert Macklin, who held extensive interviews with Kevin Rudd for his book Kevin Rudd: The Biography, writes: “For the sake of the nation, the government and yourself, abandon the delusion that has claimed and tortured you since you were deposed in June 2010. Expunge it from your mind.”
Macklin (below, right), the former associate editor of The Canberra Times and author of 21 books, says Rudd needs to stop destabilizing tactics and the agitation from his “handful of malcontents” and give Julia Gillard his “complete and undivided support.”
“Tony Abbott (who had you on the run) is now wounded. He is eminently beatable. The only major impediment to an election win and the continuation of the Government’s excellent and well-regarded policies (many of which you initiated) is your sense of entitlement.”
He also writes: “You think because you are popular now that you could retain the people’s good graces back in the Lodge. It isn’t true. You are popular because you’re no longer being tested on the front line.
“You talk a great game, Kevin, but that’s not what governing is about. That’s what Julia does – with great aplomb – in the most difficult parliamentary environment since the last minority government 70 years ago. Back in the Lodge your popularity would evaporate overnight, just like it did when you squibbed “the greatest moral challenge of our time”.
“Your current destabilising tactics might have been justified when Labor was in the doldrums, with the PM unable to make that vital emotional connection with the electorate. But those days are passed.
“The people have shared her grief and are now listening to her. Moreover, they are beginning to like what they hear and see – genuine compassionate Labor leadership with a record of legislative achievement.”
This morning Shadow Treasurer Joe Hockey stood up for Rudd, telling News Ltd that the attack by Macklin was pathetic and that “People have been too tough on Kevin and it’s time to lay off him.”
Environment minister Tony Burke said the whole thing was a “dead issue” and it was time to move on.
What do you think? Is he, as Robert Macklin suggests, unable to get over his “perception as the rightful Prime Minister of Australia.”
Is it a dead issue or do you believe there is fight in Kevin ’07 yet?