Just let that sink in for a moment. We are only eight days into the parliamentary year.
I don’t know about you, but I feel like I have lived a lifetime or two during this sitting fortnight.
Still, I imagine Barnaby Joyce feels like he’s lived about three. He is holding on to his political life, by, as he threw out yesterday to Bill Shorten to the never-ending mirth of Labor backbenchers, “the skin of his teeth”.
He made it through an internal revolt (for now) but Labor is not going to let off the pressure, over the free accommodation he has received from his “close friend” Tamworth businessman Greg Maguire, and the travel he took with his former staffer and partner, Vikki Campion. I would expect to see more of that in question time, the final one before Joyce becomes acting PM, later today.
Katharine Murphy writes about that here.
Fairfax reports Joyce was paid almost $50,000 during the by-election campaign, by the Nationals party, despite earning $400,000 or so since becoming deputy prime minister. Apparently, he still needed his salary. They also published the first ReachTEL poll of New England since the affair became public, finding a third of his supporters have deserted him since the by-election.
The Daily Telegraph reports Joyce and Campion continued to work together while she was pregnant and officially attached to other offices, complete with a photo of the two of them clowning around with a carp fish.
In non-Barnaby news, Labor and the Greens passed a senate disallowance motion overnight, to stop the changes to the Murray Darling basin plan. NSW has already signalled it will pull out of the agreement. Anne Davies has more on that here
The mining union are putting pressure on Labor to leave Adani alone, reasoning it is not worth winning Batman to lose central Queensland.
And Kristina Keneally should be joining the Senate today.
Mike Bowers is out and about, because of course he is. The man does not stop. You can pin him down at @mpbowers and @mikepbowers. You can find me in the comments, or more immediately at @amyremeikis or, to see part of our day, on my instagram story at @ifyouseeamy. Quite a few of you have been messaging me there, and I promise I am working my way through responding.
I am on coffee number two, so this should be a GREAT day. Grab your poison of choice, strap in, and, as her Pettiness, Taylor Swift would say, let the games begin!
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