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Removing Tony Abbott as Prime Minister will do more harm than good.

I don’t like Tony Abbott. But nothing could be worse for Australian politics than removing him.

I’d like to start this article by stating that I am in no way a supporter of Tony Abbott nor his policies. But the recent calls to have him removed as Prime Minister have me concerned. Really concerned.

If Abbott gets the chop, he will be the third Australian Prime Minister in a row to be removed from the top job at the hands of a party-room coup. In comparison, the United States has given a President the boot (outside of an election) twice. Ever.

Tony Abbott at a press conference.

Of course there are systemic differences between the U.S. and Australia that are responsible for the variances of leadership turnovers, but should we be concerned that we can’t seem to pin down a leader for a full term of government?

I say we should be.

I have a theory as to why Australia is playing the field when it comes to our PM, and like most modern problems, I am going to blame the Internet and globalisation (sorry Internet, thanks for having me).

Thanks to new technologies we have the ability to share our opinions about our leaders like never before. Social media gives us a platform to voice our thoughts – and be heard. Discontent now has the tendency to snowball. Big time. And once the media picks up on the negative vibes us Aussies are putting out there, as recent political history suggests, it’s only a matter of time before the front-page headlines read, “leadership challenge”.

Want more? Try: Is Tony Abbott really up to being Prime Minister?

Modern media loves a good story. So much so that a small stupid decision made by a leader, or a small minority of dissatisfied people, can be enough for the media to run an article questioning the leaders right to the Prime Ministership. Unfortunately these publications have a lot of authority and legitimacy in the eyes of the Australian public, giving them the power to sway mass opinions.

We have a hyper moderation at play – everything and anything our leaders do or say is up for scrutiny on a very public scale. Many people see this as a good thing (myself included); globalisation has allowed democracy and representation to take on a whole new meaning.

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We have hyper-moderation at play – everything and anything our leaders do or say is up for scrutiny on a very public scale.

But here is the dilemma – at what point do we need to let our leaders make decisions, even unpopular ones, without facing the threat of being booted out? How can we expect our leaders to challenge the status quo and affect real change if they run the almost certain risk of losing their jobs in the process?

Politicians are elected to make the tough decisions. And whilst it’s important that we have the ability to have a say about what is happening in our government, we also need to allow them to do their job. They will probably stuff up from time to time, and we should be able to point it out to them when they do, *cough* knighting Prince Phillip *cough*. But with two PM’s in a row having their time cut short, and with a possible third to follow suit, something is not quite working.

Our politicians are trying to appeal to us rather than inspire us.

Like this story? Why not read: 2 words every parent wants Tony Abbott to say today.

I want to live in a country where my leader isn’t afraid to make big decisions that will go down in the history books. It’s a part of being a good strong leader.

Tony Abbott.

Just because we don’t like everything about a PM doesn’t mean the answer is a leadership change. Because unlike the United States system, our leaders are (theoretically) just the mouthpiece of the party. The policies they are spruiking are their party’s policies. Which is why we should wait for an election to get rid of a crappy PM, because in order to stop bad policies we need remove the government that supports them, not just their leader.

Personally I’m not a big fan of Abbott and his party’s policies, and I won’t be sad when he leaves politics. But I don’t want every Australian Prime Minister after to him to face the same, premature fate.

Our leaders shouldn’t have to be everyone’s best friends in order to stay in power, because they would all suck at it. So whilst Australians may not be Tony Abbott’s biggest fans right now, if it’s his policies you are unhappy with, you should be directing that discontent towards the Liberal Government because they are the ones pushing the agenda, not just the funny bloke with the big ears that we call Prime Minister.

Please note: The author used to work for the ALP government. 

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