PM gambles on lottery

COVID-19 PANDEMIC:

The Morrison Government has quickly embraced the Grattan Institute’s idea for staging a national lottery to encourage Australians to secure a COVID-19 vaccination.

Government sources said Prime Minister Scott Morrison had immediately seen the benefits of the idea as soon as it was floated this week by the Melbourne-based think tank.

“As an undisputed marketing genius, the PM recognised the benefits of holding a lottery,” the insider said.

“He insisted on hosting the draw himself and has been spending most of his time rehearsing his role in what will be the first national live televised draw on Saturday night.” (main picture)

The Bug understands the new lottery will slightly vary the Grattan Institute’s idea of a $10 million cash prize to encourage a lift in vaccination rates.

Instead of winning cash for being vaccinated, Mr Morrison will use existing secure and government-approved lottery equipment to draw a series of numbers which correspond to the name of a voter enrolled in a federal electorate.

If the voter is unvaccinated they will win a jab of their choice and if they are already vaccinated another draw will be held.

“The PM, as a marketing genius, insisted on branding the idea as Gold Scotto to leverage existing consumer recognition,” the government source said.

“He also instructed the Prime Minister’s Office to draft clear rules for the draw so that there can be no questions asked when a voter in a marginal Liberal Party seat in the Sydney region wins the first and all subsequent draws.

“To be correct, I should say the rules have been drafted so that no questions can be answered,” the source said.

When contacted at her Canberra home to comment on the Prime Minister’s initiative, veteran political journalist Michelle Grattan told The Bug she had no idea what our reporter was talking about.