It seems I was wrong ( Tale of Two Islands, HERE ). As we were told ‘ad infinitum’ the Liberals would not do any deals with the Greens.
On Sunday 18 April 2010 in that heady weekend of bargaining over one or two Cabinet positions, Nick McKim said: “Our offer for further discussion remains open to Labor or the Liberal Party.” [The Sunday Tasmanian, 18 April]
And in the same article Sue Neales wrote that Mr Will Hodgman had said he had not yet approached or talked with the Greens leader since the March 20 election and did not intend to pick up the phone.
Well, that’s what the Tasmanian public was told, but is this true and correct?
Was a call made by Mr Hodgman to Mr McKim? Did Mr McKim take that call? What was the nature of the call?
Remember that 10 days earlier Mr McKim had indicated he was inclined to support the incumbent to form Government…Bartlett was back in the Executive penthouse as Premier of Tasmania by the 8 April!
But good on Mr Hodgman for contacting Mr McKim, I say!
But we still ended up with the 4 of the 5 Greens supporting the witheringly unpopular Bartlett Labor mob (sans Llewellyn, Sturges, Butler and Singh).
So how did we end up with a Labor-Green government and not something else?
Once the ‘die was cast’ on the day the polls were declared, all three leaders knew it was ‘deal time’. David Bartlett was probably held back by usual old Labor forces; Green-phobia is entrenched. Will Hodgman was probably torn between his pre-election statements and the concern over the inevitable backlash from many quarters.
What a hungry beast politics is; it really is a greedy feeder. I guess, power always wins no matter what its complexion.
In retrospect of these events, the ABC1 Q&A program on the Monday evening before all these power-sharing deals got done, now seems rather orchestrated.
The program featured Tas. Greens leader, Nick McKim, Labor powerbroker & erstwhile nature conservation politician, Graham Richardson and current Labor MP Craig Emerson, chief negotiator of the 1989 Labor-Green Accord on behalf of State Labor. A wondrous Labor-Green advertorial FREE-TO-AIR on the ABC!
End of Act 1.