I feel his pain…
Harry Jenkins has resigned as Speaker of the House of Representatives.
Mr Jenkins told parliament on Thursday morning that he had become progressively frustrated at the stricture of minority government.
Reader Merilyn was right. Something dirty was going on behind the scenes.
LIBERAL turncoat Peter Slipper has been elected as Speaker of the House of Representatives amid extraordinary scenes in parliament today, handing Labor a crucial extra vote in the chamber.
His elevation as Labor’s nominee, after Labor’s Harry Jenkins stood aside this morning, forces his resignation from his party.
This stinks to high heaven. This has to be the most rotten, deceitful, shameless and arrogant government Australia has ever had the misfortune of not electing.
And indeed, as Merilyn noted, was does this mean for embattled MP Craig Thompson, the bloke accused of using his Health Services Union credit card to withdraw $100,000 and pay for prostitutes among other things?
Can he “safely” be found guilty now, be ejected from the Parliament, resign (or be fired from) his seat, trigger a by-election and yet it won’t matter now if an Opposition candidate wins it?
Our democracy has been hijacked by spivs.
This partly neuters Andrew Wilkie’s threat to tear up his agreement with the Govenment over pokies, and leaves the Government more able to defy the Greens, at least in the Lower House. Only this week it had to make a concession on withholding tax to the Greens just to get its new mining tax through the House of Representatives, without securing the Greens’ agreement to pass the tax in the Senate, too.
So let’s sum up. This is a Government that will be propped up by a Speaker who actually told his electorate he was a Liberal, and two independents who represent conservative electorates.
Democracy was meant to work out a bit better than this.
Bolt also notes that Jenkins appears to have been pushed.
And from that link, any suspicions about Craig Thompson have largely been confirmed.
Read between the lines on this one.
It will take Mr Slipper’s annual salary package from $200,240 to $275,390, with additional benefits to his superannuation package once he retires. Facing party-room anger and dwindling preselection prospects, this could be at the end of the current term.
The dramatic deal to change Speakers in Canberra today ensures a political year riven by crisis, ends that way.
Relying on Independents for its survival and awaiting police investigations into one of its members, Labor has thrown any semblance of honour, political conviction or loyalty aside, to grasp onto a man who was about to be discarded by his own party. This not only looks desperate and unprincipled, it also sidelines the other independents, who might not be impressed, and so might not be so reliable in the future, and it also leaves Labor in a position where it will have to explain everything Mr Slipper does or has done.
Just when you think you’ve seen it all with this government…