There’s increasing talk of an early Tasmanian state election as the Liberal leadership unravels.

Sane and independent observers are talking about February, while in the
Apple Isle sources say Premier Paul Lennon will wait until opposition
leader Rene Hidding’s position becomes untenable, then go to the polls.

That means the Libs might have to thrust Peter Gutwein or Will Hodgman,
their next generation, into the gap early – and hope that they survive.
Risky. And internal pressure is building, with cries of “Where’s
Abetz?” Surely the party powerbroker isn’t happy with the situation.
Or is he?

February makes plenty of sense. There’s no parliament to sully the
airwaves, people are in a summer mood, the cricket is on the radio – not
news – and the voters are switched off politics, more content with life and
much less likely to want change.

The summer break lets Labor feed out good news stories – and the senior
journos are on leave, meaning the government can pile on puff pieces,
piffle and profile and no-one will question it.