With the count for the Victorian Legislative Council complete, the full picture of the re-election of Daniel Andrews’s Labor government is clear. It is undeniably an impressive achievement.
In the current climate, the re-election of any government with an increased majority isn’t common, and speculation that a fear campaign based around law and order would leave Andrews vulnerable proved to be misplaced. Nor did Labor suffer any electoral penalty for a series of ministerial scandals, or for the Red Shirts affair, when government funding was misused for political campaign purposes. With politicians now held in such low esteem, a cynic might say that “scandals” are regarded as business as usual.
Instead, Andrews was able to run a campaign on his terms, focusing on infrastructure. I’m among those reluctant to identify gratitude as a motivator in voter behaviour, but the premier’s reputation for “getting things done” does seem to have been rewarded. At state level, where infrastructure and service delivery constitute a major part of the position description, it proved a winning formula.
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