Joyce matters implode as Nationals Partyroom supports leader

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Truth be told, we haven’t written anything about Barnaby this week as each time we got close, the situation exploded again.
Together with the improper employment allegations of his new partner, Joyce has faced further pressure over receiving a house rent free for 6 months. The owner of the house, offered him this to him as a gift, noting his personal circumstances. The pair are friends.
Labor has uncovered that the owner of the house also owns a hotel in Armidale, which the government has used for functions in the past, paid for by the taxpayer. 

This new set of questions revealed on Thursday came at a point where tensions inside the Nationals were beginning to simmer.

Mr Joyce is now on personal leave next week. All reports from Nationals HQ is that they are solidly behind him as the leader.

Coalition’s Family Feud

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Relations between the National and Liberal parties have collapsed, in full view of the public. 

What was a personal issue for the Joyce has exploded into a full-blown political crisis for the Coalition, the likes of which the public has not seen since the late 1980’s. 

Over the last 48 hours, Turnbull and Joyce have engaged in a war of words, with Turnbull stating that Barnaby ‘should consider his position’.
Barnaby retaliated by labelling Turnbull as ‘inept’ for making his comments, particularly when it was beginning to settle down.

So how will this be sorted out? 

Turnbull cannot sack Joyce and Joyce cannot sack Turnbull. 

Both parties can sack their leaders if they wanted!
They might think seriously about it if the two cannot reconcile.
One thing is for certain – the status quo can no longer be maintained.

Nationals Leader under fire with questions to answer

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The Deputy Prime Minister is in a relationship with a former staff member.*
It’s been revealed that the staff member has been awarded multiple high paid jobs as a media advisor inside the offices of National MP’s, which raises questions about the appropriateness of the appointments.

The staff member left Mr Joyce’s office in early 2017 but secured a position with Senator Matt Canavan. When Senator Canavan resigned with dual citizenship issues, the staff member was appointed again to Damian Drum’s office. 

Both Canavan and Drum already had media advisors and the need for an extra one has not yet been explained.

The heat is also on Malcolm Turnbull in relation this issue, as the ministerial standards state his office must approve the appointment of family members.

 This issue is likely to dominate the second week of the parliament.

*As many readers have noted, we haven’t commented on Barnaby Joyce’s family circumstances. We’ve long taken the view it’s not our job to update you on the private lives and personal choices of politicians. In this instance, it appears his new relationship has effected government operations and taxpayers money.

Brandis resigns from the Senate to become the UK High Commissioner

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After more than a decade in the Parliament, George Brandis resigned as a Senator on Wednesday.

A victim of the cabinet reshuffle last December, Mr Brandis will become the next High Commissioner to the United Kingdom.

In his valedictory speech that traversed many topics, Mr Brandis called upon his colleges to return to the classical forms of liberalism and keep a watchful eye on further attacks on Australia’s institutions.

This was no doubt a subtle elbow to the ribs for the Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton, who took responsibility for several security organisations off the Attorney General’s Department.

Mr Brandis listed his two greatest achievements in office – the passing of the Same-Sex Marriage bills and the newly created counter Terrorism legislation.

Dual Citizenship scandal continues as Lamb details missing documents

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Susan Lamb has detailed why she hasn’t been able to clarify her citizenship.

The marginal Queensland MP claims she is unable to access her parent’s marriage certificate as her father has died and she has been estranged from her mother since childhood.
But within minutes of the speech, journalists clarified with Queensland authorities that she could have access to the marriage certificate due to ‘exceptional circumstances’.
This, together with the fact that The Australian has tracked down her estranged mother, who has confirmed she is willing to obtain the documents, points to more of a delaying tactic, rather than a genuine roadblock.

Her statement hasn’t shifted anyone in the Government – they may still refer her to the High Court. #auspol

Child Abuse Royal Commission wraps up after 5 years

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The Prime Minister announced this week the nation will formally apologise to victims of child sexual abuse, later in the year.
This follows the conclusion of the Royal Commission into institutional responses to Child Sexual Abuse, which heard the stories of more than 8,000 people and undertook 57 case studies.
The Federal Government is also working with the States, victim support groups and institutions to pull together a national redress scheme, which will commence in July.

What happened over the summer?

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It’s great to be back in 2018!

Here’s a snapshot of what happened over the summer:

  • Citizenship: Jacqui Lambie has resigned (she’s Scottish) and the Liberal’s Jim Molan replaced Senator Fiona Nash today.
  • Susan Lamb, Josh Wilson, Justine Keay, Rebeka Sharkie and Jason Falinski still have questions to answer
  • John Alexander won the Bennelong by-election, following the discovery of his dual citizenship
  • Labor’s David Feeney has resigned as the member for Batman, setting up a Labor/Green by-election
  • Sam Dastyari resigned as a Senator, following too many unanswered questions about his connections to Chinese businessmen
  • His vacancy will be filled by Kristina Keneally, Labor’s unsuccessful candidate for Bennelong
  • Tasmania and South Australia are in election mode in state polls in a few weeks
  • Independent Senator Lucy Gichuhi has turned blue! She now sits as a Liberal Senator for South Australia
  • Lyle Shelton has quit the Australian Christian Lobby and has joined Cory Bernadi’s Australian Conservatives.
We’ll let you know if anything else happens!