Senior Labor MPs and party strategists joined a hastily-organised call this morning, after the latest Newspoll revealed there was significant work to be done to orchestrate a disappointing loss at the next election.
With Labor a full eight percentage points ahead of the Coalition, many within the party worry that the path to a come-from-in-front-defeat is becoming more difficult to envisage. “There’s a lot of ground to make up. It’s getting harder to see how we can pull this off,” one insider said.
Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese urged calm and asked his team to draw on previous experience. “This is a big gap, but there’s no need for panic. We’ve fucked this up from here before, and we’ll fuck it up again. Trust the process, trust the plan”.
While the date of the next election is still unknown, Mr Albanese said there was still time to snatch a last-minute defeat. “We have time on our side. If we’re disciplined enough to match the Coalition on every single policy, eventually voters will see that there’s no point voting for us. Let’s not give up now”.
Many Labor MPs who spoke to The Shovel on background said there was a sense of growing unease within the party, particularly amongst backbenchers. One said his future was on the line. “I’m in a marginal seat, so when I look at these polls, there’s a growing realisation that I may need to spend the next three years working in Canberra. It’s looking pretty grim”.