Rudd is not going to be Leader again. Senator Doug Cameron and Daryl Melham have stronger prospects of elevation to the top-job.
But the story was inevitable because Rudd does still harbor delusions of restored grandeur despite proving himself to be a highly unsuitable and fundamentally inadequate leader.
He hangs around the Terrace bar, making nice with staffers and scribes, he calls sometimes stunned colleagues out of the blue, he looks in the mirror and see Churchill staring right back at him.
If it wasn’t so serious it would be hilarious.
He needs to do the decent thing and quit. But he won’t and that’s mostly because he is quite convinced that these are his Wilderness Years and that some day soon he’ll return to greatness.
But it’s such an implausible prospect in the caucus that VEXNEWS usually hears laughter when members of our famed Alan Howe-busting Investigations Unit ask about Rudd, his cunning plans and what the future hold.
They gave him their trust, once. His abuse of it has not been forgotten. Or forgiven. They don’t even think he meant it, actually. His unique form of menace and disconnection in relation to colleagues is attributed to demons in his past. A case for Dr Phil perhaps.
Even his only significant backer as the Rudd ship sank, Anthony Albanese, is thought to have built quite a strong working relationship with Gillard and new COS action-man Ben Hubbard in recent months. The departure of Albo mate Lindsay Tanner, who thought poisonous and sometimes envious thoughts for his rival, is thought to have played a role in this.
So who in the caucus would actually back Rudd? There’s said to be nine of them. Of a caucus that’s the best part of a hundred sinning-souls.
Our famed restraint leads us not to want to name and shame them all but is there a significant factional player among them? Barely. A prominent MP whose support would gain attention? No.
Their Rudd-love is reminiscent of battered spouse syndrome. Victims of emotional violence caught in a cycle of denial and misplaced loyalty.
The whole Rudd returns thing is ultimately bull-dust. It’s fair game to report Rudd’s insatiable lust for power but it needs to be seen in its proper context: Labor’s caucus will never get back into bed with one who so thoroughly abused and neglected them in the past.