Look at that quote from August, 2004. The PM didn’t say interest rates wouldn’t rise. He asked “Who do you trust to keep interest rates low?” And what he asked before then may be even more relevant. He asked “Who do you trust to keep the economy strong?”

Inflation may be up. Interest rates may be about to go up. But it still seems – just look at yesterday’s Newspoll — that Australians believe the Coalition are the better economic managers.

According to Newspoll, they believe John Howard is the better economic manager by a margin of 48 to 33%. Ironically, that’s just one point less than the gap in the two party preferred vote. That has Labor 16 points ahead.

Will the two cancel each other out? Will a rates rise – or the threat of a rates rise – make voters stick with the devil they know? The theory has been around for a while. It might just be the last rabbit. A rabbit with myxo, but a rabbit nonetheless.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey