Politicians have become very unpolitical in our current era; they seem more concerned about their personal lives than national issues. We have spent the last month listening to more and more allegations emerge against a number of our politicians. I thought we had heard everything about the leaders of our country until we were delivered with details of their sexual relationships. At this point, in my view, the country had crossed a line. A line that shouldn’t involve 24 million Australians.
Before we were confronted with Barnaby Joyce’s life details, we encountered the dual citizenship mess. An unnecessary cause of drama that we began dealing within August 2016, when the government wanted advice on the standing of then Family First senator, Bob Day. It escalated enormously into a whirlwind that did not relent throughout 2017. It was of the same scale as the same-sex marriage debate, if not greater. I reminded myself that only one should have caused a national discussion.
As the saga progressed more and more names were thrown into the pool, it was expanding day by day. Scott Ludlam, Larissa Waters, Nick Xenophon, Malcolm Roberts, Matt Canavan were just some of those who were caught up in the drama. The most senior politician put in the spotlight was Barnaby Joyce due to his citizenship in New Zealand. The High Court later found Mr Joyce and four others unentitled to continue representing in parliament. The former Deputy Prime Minister then faced the New England by-election on the 2nd December which he won. Mr Joyce had survived this hurdle but an even bigger one was on the horizon.
I think it is fair to say the dual citizen crises sent Australians mad, day after day we continued to hear about politician’s personal lives. Some of our country’s leaders themselves seemed confused about their citizenship status. We were waking up morning after morning to politicians plastered on the front page of papers from around the nation. “In the balance,” “Coalition on the brink,” “Barnabye,” “Coalition in crises,” “Joyce wiped out,” were all headlines published around the country during the so-called crises. Aussies just couldn’t get away from it.
The dual citizenship distraction eventually passed after 11 politicians were forced to resign. I thought that meant politicians could get back to focusing purely on our country. Oh, I was so wrong. On the 7th February this year The Daily Telegraph in Sydney published an article that would soon end Barnaby Joyce’s role as Deputy Prime Minister. The front page was home to a picture of Barnaby’s pregnant ex-staffer with the headline, “Bundle of Joyce.” Could life get any worse for poor old Barnaby?
I’m not sure how Barnaby felt over the next few weeks but I’m sure he wasn’t over the moon. We, on the other hand, were confronted with many details, some that we really didn’t need to know about. His colleagues either stood by him or turned against him while Natalie; his ex-wife, and new partner, Vikki, were forced into the public arena. On the 22nd February, Mr Joyce declared defeat and resigned as Deputy Prime Minister and Nationals leader. Within days Barnaby spoke about the possibility, that Vikki might be pregnant with someone else’s child, another confusing twist.
These incidents have fuelled a political mess over the last 12 months or more and I think it’s now time to focus on our country and not those running it. Why do we need to know if Barnaby Joyce is possibly having a child with a woman other than his supposed wife? We don’t and that is the simple reality. If the spotlight was on someone of less interest it wouldn’t make the front page so why should politicians personal lives be any different. They’re paid to run our country, so let them do that.
FEATURED: Barnaby Joyce (Facebook)