Now that Colin Barnett has departed the Western Australian Liberal
Party leadership, an avalanche of criticism has descended upon him for
the manner and method of the campaign. If one is to believe the members
of the Liberal Party campaign committee who were charged with its
conception and implementation, Barnett was responsible for every detail
of it.

The truth of course is to be found elsewhere. Those who
must take personal responsibility for the disastrous campaign and the
utterly unnecessary outcome it delivered are the state director, Paul
Everingham, the party senior vice president, Mr Mathias Cormann and
Colin Barnett’s chief of staff, Richard Ellis.

The state president would normally be expected to share the blame. However, the
incumbent, Mrs Danielle Blain, is in my opinion out of her depth, so it
would be unfair to condemn her.

Unquestionably Barnett must
take ultimate responsibility for two critical elements: that of the
inclusion of the Kimberley water canal proposal in the leadership
debate and the arithmetical budgetary funding blunder. In isolation,
those elements may be judged as having been the defining issues of the
election. As is most often the way in political campaigns the truth is
more elusive.

The full piece on the Crikey website is here.

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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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