Even if a formal investigation is carried out by police into the allegations against embattled Labor MP Craig Thomson, it is unlikely to bring about the downfall of the current Federal Government, according to Deakin University’s Dr Geoff Robinson,
A specialist in Australian politics, Dr Robinson has been keeping a close eye on developments in the Thomson saga which relates to allegations of misuse of a credit card while working for the Health Services Union.
“I am inclined to think that it is overstated in the substantial sense,” he said.
“It is overstating things to say there is a police investigation going on.
“Basically what has happened is that the police have been sent some information and they have said thanks you for sending it to us.
“Politicians often say they are referring things to the police and the police have a pretty standard pro forma which essentially goes we are grateful to receive any information from members of the public.
“I doubt even if there was formal investigation it would lead to anything before the next election which is due in about 18 months or so.
“So I don’t think we’re going to see a change of government unless Thomson himself decides to resign, and with some of the money issues he seems to have I doubt he will be doing that.”
Dr Robinson said that while there is unlikely to be a by-election, the atmosphere of crisis was “polluting people’s view” of the Gillard government.
“If there is a public air of crisis then it becomes harder for any government,” Dr Robinson said.
"The recent review by the NSW Labor party of their disastrous performance in this year’s state election commented that the Party had selected candidates who should never have been in Parliament.
"Julia Gillard will hope this doesn’t apply to federal parliament as well.
“Having said that, I think they’ve been pretty successful with getting their agenda through so far and they now have a much more sympathetic Senate.
“Certainly we have some interesting times ahead but as I have already said, I don’t expect we will be having a change of change of government until this one has run its full term.”