Kevin Rudd twists in his ear with his left index finger

Footage apparently showing the man tipped to become Australia's next prime minister eating his own ear wax has proved a hit on Internet video sharing website YouTube.
The clip of  Labor Party leader Kevin Rudd has been posted three times on the website and attracted more than 200,000 web browsers.
While Rudd enjoys a massive opinion poll lead heading into the November 24 election, the news website suggested the footage "could do more damage to (his) election chances than any policy blitz".
It shows Rudd sitting on the backbenches in the Australian parliament while a colleague delivers a speech in the foreground, meaning it must date from before 2003, when he was elevated to the front bench.
As his colleague speaks, Rudd appears to gaze around in a bored manner before inserting his left index finger into his ear, twisting it a number of times then placing it into his mouth and chewing.
Washington Post blogger Emil Steiner picked up on the footage this week, describing it as "stomach churning".
"Whether Rudd is a habitual ear wax user or merely a recreational one should be irrelevant," Steiner wrote.
"The question is whether a man with so little savvy for the cameras surrounding him is fit to hold his nation's highest office. And that is a question Australians will have to answer for themselves."
One YouTube poster said Prime Minister John Howard's government should use the footage in an election advertisement, while others claimed Howard supporters had posted it in an attempt to dent Rudd's popularity.
"This happened eight years ago, funny how it only came back up within one month from an election," user 26Samuel26 said.
Another user ck867 said Rudd's apparent gaffe would not affect how people voted.



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