back to top

Bloody Hell, WTAF Happened In Australian Politics Today

An alleged secret Kiwi plot, sex toys with a senator and the government lost a vote on the floor of parliament.

Posted on

It's Tuesday morning and Australia woke up, looked at the papers and thought, "Holy shit that wasn't a dream, our deputy prime minister really is a Kiwi".

Long white cloud hangs over Barnaby Joyce, & GC Titans in disarray @couriermail

The completely ridiculous Australian citizenship mess threatened to swallow up Nick Xenophon, who'd reportedly once travelled on a Greek passport.

Anyone else planning to join the merry Section 44 band? #auspol

Like, let's take stock for a second: Five Australian MPs have been referred to the High Court after information came to light they were/might be secret dual citizens.

The Australian Parliament is turning into ridiculous late-stage Battlestar Galactica when every second cast member is revealed as a Cylon.

Over on Sky News, Libertarian senator David Leyonhjelm suggested he was a Swede, or maybe he wasn't, who the fuck even knows.

David Leyonhjelm is on Sky saying he is a Swedish Baron... but he doesn't think he is a Swedish citizen... but he hasn't asked.

Then Amber Heard stepped up to the crease and tonked her long-time foe Barnaby Joyce for six.

When @Barnaby_Joyce said "no one is above the law" I didn't realize he meant New Zealand law ... https://t.co/ZSAy5sYPL2

Amber got the most savage revenge for that God-awful apology-to-Australia video.

To comfort Mr. Joyce in his hour need, I have sent him a box of New Zealand's finest kiwi fruit (assuming this pass… https://t.co/7n4qmTLlnY

For the second day, Joyce said he wouldn't be stepping down from cabinet, despite comments from a July radio interview emerging in which the deputy prime minister said the situation was "black and white" for dual citizens.

Barnaby previously: "You can’t be a member of parliament & have dual citizenship- it's black & white." You know wha… https://t.co/VevlVIPHik

But that was a mere blip on the radar, because in the Coalition party room the prime minister was toying with the idea that Labor had hatched a secret, trans-Tasman plot to bring down Barnaby Joyce.

PM to party: The Australian people elected this Govt, Bill Shorten wants to steal Govt by entering into a conspiracy with a foreign power.

According to the NZ Labour leader, someone from Australian Labor had contacted a NZ Labour MP about putting a question to the Kiwi parliament relating about citizenship.

Turnbull told party room meeting this morning Bill Shorten "wants to steal government by entering into a conspiracy with a foreign power"

But New Zealand's internal affairs minister was quick to hose down the idea that the Aussie-Kiwi, Labor-Labour plot actually was the start of the mess.

This is so much utter nonsense - while Hipkins' questions were inappropriate, they were not the instigator. Austral… https://t.co/p99u4ctZfH

Then the shut really hit the fan.

Australia's foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop held a press conference to call out what she said was "treacherous behaviour" from Labor and Bill Shorten.

She also took aim at Kiwis: "Should there be a change of government [in New Zealand], I would find it very hard to build trust with those involved in allegations designed to undermine the government of Australia."

The implication here is Australia's foreign minister would not trust a Labour government in New Zealand #auspol

Five weeks out from a national election in New Zealand, Kiwi Labour leader Jacinda Ardern was like, um, sorry, what now?

I value our relationship with the Australian Govt highly. I won't let disappointing & false claims stand in the way of that relationship

In Question Time, Labor's Tony Burke brought down the house with a question to Bishop about her comments regarding NZ Labour and Barnaby Joyce.

If the Foreign Minister can't work with New Zealanders... how will she work with Barnaby Joyce? - zings Labor's… https://t.co/UwKMdqqT5I

"If the foreign minister won't be able to work with the New Zealanders, how will the foreign minister work with the deputy prime minister?" Burke asked sarcastically.

Speaker Tony Smith ruled the question out of order and moved on.

The government backbenchers sat all stony-faced.

☺️😀 🗿🗿 🤢🤠🙂 🗿🗿🗿 😂🤣😝😀 🗿🗿🗿🗿 😝🎊😝🤣😂 🗿🗿🗿🗿 😁🤡😉😅😁 🗿🗿🗿🗿🗿 🤣😘🎊🤣😝 🤠🗿🗿🗿🗿 😅😂☺️😅😘 🗿🗿🗿🗿🗿 Question Time

Immigration minister Peter Dutton tried to get back on the front foot, but Labor again was quick with the zingers.

Dutton: “I tell you one thing Labor doesn't like talking about, that is border protection policy." Labor MPs yell: “He’s behind you!"

Barnaby Joyce finally had the call and announced that he's received "verbal confirmation" today that he's renounced his Kiwi citizenship. That's 13 bloody years after first being elected to parliament.

At least one Kiwi actor wasn't impressed with Joyce fleeing his newly discovered New Zealand citizenship.

Should I laugh or be offended at Barnaby Joyce's confession to being a NZer as if it were a vile shameful & untrea… https://t.co/ZcmJCTFc6E

Meanwhile, the ABC was defending one of its radio programs which interviewed a white nationalist. As you do.

Oh so this tweet actually came true https://t.co/aJXRRB6LQN

It was a big day for the ABC. One Nation secured an inquiry into the public broadcaster, which may involve the salaries of its top stars being made public.

BREAKING: One Nation says government has agreed to inquiry into ABC, staff salary disclosures in exchange for its backing of media reforms

If that wasn't enough in this exhausting day, the government got defeated 69 - 61 on a vote about the Great Barrier Reef on the floor of the House of Representatives.

The government eventually took back control, but it got caught with its pants down again.

So, for the second time this term an opposition Second reading amendment was carried.

One more thing. At some point today, Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie confirmed that she took some of her political staffers to a sex shop to buy Christmas "trinkets".

.@JacquiLambie says she went to a sex shop with staff to buy Xmas trinkets and doesn't see anything wrong with that… https://t.co/mf52mEMV87

Our deputy prime minister is a Kiwi, there's an alleged secret Australian-Kiwi plot and a senator is out here buying Chrissie presents at a sex shop. Wayne, same mate, same.

In all the time I've been in parliament it’s never been this bizarre #qt

Mark Di Stefano is a Media and Politics Reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Mark Di Stefano at mark.distefano@buzzfeed.com.

Got a confidential tip? Submit it here.