By ALISSA WARREN
The Daughters of the Election. They’re beautiful, smart, sexy and sassy. And they’re the biggest drawcard of all.
Jane Austen would have had a field day popping these girls into bonnets and hoops, with a dash of Darcy.
Last night, Opposition Leader Tony Abbott went on Big Brother in a bid to lure a few extra votes. A strange tactic but that’s not why I got the heebie jeebies.
During the appearance, with his daughters pillared (anyone over this word?) on either side, Abbott said that “if you want to know who to vote for, I’m the guy with the not bad looking daughters…”
Which begs the question, when does the political father/daughter relationship go from cool to uncool?
When a politician is seen with a baby, there is no doubt that it can prove very effective. They can’t go wrong. Dribble, vomit, crying. “Oh,” the politician chuckles, “your baby must like me.”
The Dad Jokes flow thick and fast. It’s all good fodder for these seasoned performers.
Jess Rudd’s baby daughter ticks all the boxes. Itty-bitty. Little dresses. Pink cardigans. Fluffy hair. Tiny shoes. Super cute. Related.
And this is where Tony Abbott sits firmly in the Grey Zone. His girls are adults, not children anymore. And it’s an entirely different ballgame.
Abbott has always struggled with the female voter. And holding hands with his two gorgeous daughters has seemingly lifted some confidence in the community about his attitudes to women.
But has he stepped over the line with this comment to the Big Brother contestants? It’s one thing to talk about someone in your team having ‘sex appeal’ but is it inappropriate/strange for Abbott to have said this about his kids?
Of course, these two young women are gorgeous, clever and well-mannered. What father wouldn’t want to parade them around? They’re one of his biggest achievements and a lot of voters will relate to that. But, seriously, on national TV? Is it daggy-Dad gone douchebag?
The family card is a big winner for both Rudd and Abbott. There’s no doubt this is a tactic.