Joyce stands down as National struggles to find new leader *

Written By: - Date published: 8:07 am, February 24th, 2018 - 13 comments
Categories: Abuse of power, australian politics, International, Media, Politics, the praiseworthy and the pitiful, you couldn't make this shit up - Tags: ,

In Australia New Zealander of the year finalist Barnaby Joyce has announced that he will be standing down as leader of the National Party.

The media frenzy was clearly becoming too much for him. News that his family values were not that good hurt, publication of his relationship with a former staffer he tried to ride out, but it was the hypocrisy of his arranging plush jobs for his new partner and failing to identify her as such that was really causing the damage. And then the media started to find instances where taxpayers resources were used for the relationship’s travel needs. But the coup de grace was the recent allegation of separate instances of sexual harassment of other women.

From Katharine Murphy at the Guardian:

Barnaby Joyce was clear on Friday about the tipping point that had finally triggered his resignation as deputy prime minister and leader of the National party after a fortnight under siege.

It was a sexual harassment claim made to the National party by a Western Australian woman, believed to be a prominent person in the state’s regional affairs. “I just thought that has to be the straw that breaks the camel’s back,” Joyce told reporters in Armidale on Friday.

He has denied that claim pointblank, just as he has denied behaving inappropriately at a rural women’s dinner in 2011, where an accuser – who has thus far declined to speak to any journalists on the record – claims that he pinched her on the backside.

Given that various rumours have circulated ceaselessly for months, and given that the constant drip of information showed no signs of letting up, and given that Malcolm Turnbull had gone to war with his deputy PM in an effort to blast him out, and given that people inside the government were obviously leaking against Joyce in an effort to push him closer to the cliff face – it has been clear for at least a week that the government would be torn asunder if he stayed.

Yet Joyce hung on, partly because he’d been backed into a corner and humiliated, and partly because of the lack of an obvious alternative leadership prospect in the National party apart from Darren Chester, who has a public profile but couldn’t be given the job because he was too progressive for the family values crew from Queensland. While Michael McCormack is now considered the man most likely, he’s a someone people outside the Riverina would struggle to recognise.

The twitter response was brutal:

And Turnbull’s hold on power has become that more tenuous. Labor is already comfortably ahead of the Liberals in the polls. This sort of controversy tends to sap public confidence in a Government and could spell the end.  Particularly as Joyce and former Liberal leader Tony Abbott will be sitting on the back benches reminding the public what a hypocritical bunch the Australian right wing parties are.

13 comments on “Joyce stands down as National struggles to find new leader *”

  1. KJT 1

    Bonk ban Barnaby gone.

    Next Dildo Baggins and his fellow smeagols, with luck.

  2. adam 2

    I wondered why this took so long. It seems the Queensland Clique are still got their frenzied obsession with far right ‘family values’ – which to the rest of us just seem to be a front for the right to beat, slap, and pinch women when they don’t want it.

    • greywarshark 2.1

      And that might extend to pushing them off balconies if they are too annoying.

    • cleangreen 2.2

      Hi Adam,

      It was another example of “the national born to rule” doggy ideology that prevailed there as Steven joyce here has engendered an ingrained ideology here also inside the NZ National party.

      That was the reason why it took so long for Steven Joyce’s cousin Barnaby Joyce to resign.

      We hope that we can see the same here with the resignation of the failed $11 Billion dollar man as he should also resign now that he as “National party campaign manager” failed to get National elected this time.

  3. Antoine 3

    Good to see him gone

  4. patricia bremner 4

    So Labour in next door. That may work well for Australian NZers.

    • cleangreen 4.1

      I agree there.
      Yes that would be good for us all if labour got in there to I believe.

    • veutoviper 4.2

      “So Labour in next door.”

      Not yet.

      As I understand it, B Joyce has stood down as Deputy Prime Minister and as Leader of the National Party – but not as a National MP. This means that the coalition numbers remain the same, and the coalition government continues for now.

      The whole debacle may have a further destabilising effect on this already shaky government, but we will have to wait to see whether Turnbull and the coalition can withstand this or whether a new general election results.

  5. It’s always the family-values bullshitters. I got my first taste of this as a teenager, when my family belonged to the same church as prominent “family-values” blatherer and fervent anti-abortion campaigner Doug Kidd. At one service we were all urged to be sure not to talk to any journalists about the Hon. Doug, as they were sniffing around for anything to back up claims he’d impregnated a staff member and tried to procure an abortion for her. I hadn’t realised the depth of hypocrisy in conservative values up til that point, so there’s at least one thing I can be grateful to my religious upbringing for.

    • Macro 5.1

      I hadn’t realised the depth of hypocrisy in conservative values up til that point, so there’s at least one thing I can be grateful to my religious upbringing for.

    • RedBaronCV 5.2

      I remember that. There was one tiny paragraph in a Sunday paper then …nothing.
      An early insight into the sort of news that doesn’t get reported (relevant because of Kidd’s anti abortion stance) and the power of the rulers to suppress the inconvenient to them news.

      • Psycho Milt 5.2.1

        Yep. My parents didn’t like the Hon. Doug, correctly recognising his “values” as being of the punitive, self-interested, “whited sepulchre” variety typical of religious conservatives, but they’d never have said so to a journalist. Also, the way things were back then, if the whole story had come out there’d have been far more shame heaped on the woman than on him, so it’s hardly surprising she didn’t make a fuss about it. I expect a great many politicians got away with stuff on that basis.

        • veutoviper

          “I expect a great many politicians got away with stuff on that basis.”

          Not just politicans, but also other people in positions of power and influence, including religious position of power (of all types) and those in positions of power in hospitals, orphanages, etc etc. Hence the call for the all such institutions etc to be included in the Royal Commission into historical abuse, and not just state organisations etc.

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