Must Be An Election Coming: Malcolm Turnbull Just Played The Poor Dead Single Dad Card


As his popularity continues to slide in the polls – both at a party level, and a personal level – Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has gone ‘full family’, spamming email accounts in his electorate with a personal video story about his amazing – but admittedly dead – father.

“I wouldn’t be where I am today without my dad,” reveals Turnbull.

Which is actually true. Indeed, Malcolm wouldn’t be anything without his father… sperm being a fairly vital component in the formation of all humanoids. But back to Malcolm, and his dead dad… who never actually gets a name in the video, other that ‘my dad’.

“Raising me as a single father, I was the main object of everything he wanted to achieve. He didn’t have much money but he worked hard and sacrificed so that I could go to school and achieve what he couldn’t.”

I wouldn't be where I am today without my dad.

Posted by Malcolm Turnbull on Sunday, June 5, 2016

And so what has Malcolm Turnbull achieved?

Well, apart from being the most powerful man in the nation – not counting every other member of his political party, to whom he bows and scrapes – the Silver Fox from the wealthiest electorate in Australia was worth an estimated $133 million in 2005, a year after he entered parliament.

Just over a decade on, that figure has grown to around $200 million, according to the Fin Review.

Nice work Malcolm’s dad!

None of that, however, appears to be impressing voters, with a Fairfax Ipsos poll out over the weekend revealing that not only has Labor hit the front on national polling, but Turnbull has a real contest on his hands to retain his own seat of Wentworth.

He’s facing a 10 per cent swing in his own seat, and while he’s still likely to win at this stage, if an election were held last week his margin would have been slashed to just three per cent, down from a very comfortable 13 per cent at 2013 last election.

Reports Fairfax: “The poll, commissioned by the Labor candidate, wealthy art dealer Evan Hughes, finds 55.6 per cent of Wentworth voters report that their opinion of Mr Turnbull has declined since September.”

That’s what you get for cutting the arts, Turnbull!

All of which might explain the email and poppy video Turnbull has released. Internal Liberal polling has apparently suggested that voters aren’t connecting with the multi-millionaire at a personal level.


In Turnbull’s defence, the feedback on the video is overwhelmingly positive. But there are, as you might expect, a few critics.

This from Stephen Lomas: “Hey folks, what’s up first – Fathers Day or Election Day? Anyway Malcolm, glad you enjoyed your Dad. That’s great. How would he cope today do you reckon if he was doing his best to raise you while a government like yours was shutting down manufacturing, slashing community support & social services, all while making it harder for workers to defend their rights in the workplace?”

And this rather blunt message, from Liberal voter Christine Hughes: “My, my its glad to hear you loved your Dad and he treated you with love and Respect. But before you all scream. I am a liberal supporter. But tell me what this has to do with increasing pensions for the elderly or helping Veterans get medical help or housing. Also Getting more housing available for homeless woman and children. Or fathers more access to their children. Can we stick to policy. I’m a nice grand mother but that is not a voting issue. This election is making me crazy. I’m not sure how this other than a nice story will help us all. Sorry I’m not voting for Mr Turnbull’s father.”

Who is dead, by the way. And was a single dad. With no name (Bruce Bligh Turnbull… for the record. Turnbull’s mum was Coral Magnolia Turnbull, a prominent feminist, academic and writer).

Launched in 2004, New Matilda is one of Australia's oldest online independent publications. It's focus is on investigative journalism and analysis, with occasional smart arsery thrown in for reasons of sanity. New Matilda is owned and edited by Walkley Award and Human Rights Award winning journalist Chris Graham.