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An election fought on the political low ground

Michelle Grattan writes in The Conversation (10.4.22) about the 2022 federal election, called by PM Scott Morrison for Saturday 21 May, with the Coalition government trailing in the polls and looking to deflect pressure to its opposition counterpart in a six week-long campaign.

‘This election is a contest between a desperate prime minister and an opposition leader who sometimes looks as though he has been promoted beyond his capability.

‘Neither government nor Labor is putting forward an agenda to seize the imagination of Australians as they struggle out from the pall of the pandemic.

‘The Coalition, which enters the campaign well behind in the polls, is pitching centrally on economic management, as well as national security. Labor is casting itself as the “caring” party: “Child Care. Medicare. Aged Care. Because Labor cares”. It portrays the government as “out of ideas and out of time”.

‘This is an election that will be fought on the political low ground, not on the heights of competing ambitious blueprints for the country’s future. It’s a battle between a leader who’s lost the confidence of many of the public and one who has yet to gain it.’

Backs to the wall: Queensland a potential dam buster for Coalition

Dennis Atkins writes in InQld (11.4.22) about the electoral landscape in Queensland as the federal election campaign commences, with the Coalition seeking to hold onto its swag of seats in this state.

‘Dams and elections go together like strawberries and cream or tomato and basil. We’ve already had territory staked out for a big fight over a big dam in Far North Queensland.

‘Now the election is on and we can look at a key battleground state as the campaign’s dam wall.

‘Queensland filled up with Coalition wins in 2019 – finishing with a lopsided 23 out of the 30 seats – and the LNP knows if that electoral dam wall breaks the flood could reach Canberra.

‘Even a big spill over the wall might threaten the mortality of Scott Morrison’s government.

‘This is why the Liberals Nationals Coalition is playing an almost exclusively defensive political game in Queensland. They don’t want to lose any of those 23 seats. They will hunt and fight until the last dog dies – a fitting adoption of a Deep South saying for Australia’s Deep North.’

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