June 22, 2018

Everyone Is Confused About The "Weatherboard Nine" After Barnaby Joyce Resigned

24 February 2018, 07:07 | Donald Newman

WHAT WILL BE WILL BE Ken O'Dowd is keeping his cards close to his chest. Chris Lees News O'Dowd keeps cards close to chest on Nats leadership

WHAT WILL BE WILL BE Ken O'Dowd is keeping his cards close to his chest

Mr Joyce, one of Australia's many colourful political figures, announced his resignation on Monday amid scandal over his private life, but is being remembered for his role in the life of Boo and Pistol, two Yorkshire Terriers from California.

Australia's Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce will resign from the leadership position after weeks of scandal over his long-term affair with a former staffer and new allegations of sexual harassment.

"It's about the person in the weatherboard and iron, something that manifestly expresses what the National Party is about", Joyce said. "I never tried to be anything else".

Joyce has been a controversial figure in the Turnbull Coalition government.

Mr Joyce has asked the Nationals to refer the allegations to police.

Mr Joyce's spokesman said the reference to "boss" related to his chief of staff, not 32-year-old "Miss Campion".

Mr Joyce will remain in Parliament as a backbencher.

"As he said, he believes he can not do that from the despatch box", Mr Turnbull said, referring to the box used by frontbenchers speaking in Federal Parliament.

Mr Joyce has told other media outlets he was seeking legal advice.

The saga has raised questions about the unity of the coalition headed by Mr Turnbull, who is leader of the Liberal Party. He is expecting a child with his former media secretary.

Mr Pitt said his priority was working for his constituents "on announcements and policy, like the cashless debit card, which I've been working tirelessly on to help the vulnerable children in our community".

Barnaby Joyce has finally caved under pressure and sensationally stepped down as leader of the Nationals and as Deputy Prime Minister. Moving back to the bench, he will continue to be a part of the parliament.

Earlier today there were reports that a formal sexual harassment complaint had been made against Mr Joyce.

Things have been tense with the PM too.Malcolm Turnbull held a tense presser last week where he slammed Barnaby's bad decisions and poor judgement, and announced a ban preventing ministers from having sex with staffers as a result of Joyce's actions.

The outgoing deputy prime minister said he had only given notice of his resignation to Senator Mathias Cormann, who is filling in as acting prime minister while Turnbull is on a visit to the US.

Joyce's travails deepened when Broad told the ABC on Thursday he had the endorsement of his local branch in the Mallee to call on Joyce to resign the leadership of the National party next Monday.

The move to the backbench means he will give up the portfolios of Infrastructure and Transport and his salary will drop from $416,000 to about $200,000 a year. "The stand-off it invoked between the cabinet's two most senior figures now represents the gravest threat to the Coalition government since it was formed", the Herald editorial said.

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