Harry’s reasons

Harry Jenkins has ended the parliamentary year with a surprise, announcing he will resign as Speaker today:

In a statement to Parliament, Speaker Jenkins said he’d divorced himself from party political matters in order to carry out his duties in a non-partisan manner. “In this era of minority government I have progressively become frustrated at this stricture,” he said. “My desire is to be able to participate in policy and parliamentary debate, and this would be incompatible with continuing in the role of Speaker.”

Which is no huge deal if that’s all there is to it. But with the rift between Deputy Speaker Peter Slipper and his party widening of late – the LNP is presently considering disciplinary action against him – the suspicion exists that the government has reached an arrangement with him. If so, the return of Jenkins to the floor would enable the government to win confidence motions 76-73 rather than 75-74. Stay tuned.

UPDATE: Events are moving quicker than my iPad typing speed. Phillip Coorey of the Sydney Morning Herald reports:

The Liberal MP, Peter Slipper, is likely to become the next Speaker of the House of Representatives after Labor’s Harry Jenkins resigned this morning, shocking the Parliament on its final sitting day for 2011. Labor MPs will be asked to approve Mr Slipper’s nomination at a special caucus meeting scheduled for 10am.

Author: William Bowe

William Bowe is a Perth-based election analyst and occasional teacher of political science. His blog, The Poll Bludger, has existed in one form or another since 2004, and is one of the most heavily trafficked websites on Australian politics.

1,458 comments on “Harry’s reasons”

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  1. I always thought “rat’ was used by the Labor Party to describe a defector and I find it interesting that the Liberal Party and the MSM have adopted the word to describe Slipper.

    Oh, wait on … there was the Big Rodent, who stripped the Liberal Party of its social conscience, its humanity, its sense of fair play. The Rodent, a creature that perfected
    the dog whistle.

    To describe Slipper as a “rat” devalues the word.

  2. [didn’t he support the governments maternity leave policy and in fact tried to introduce ammendments to extend it? Is maternity leave worthwhile?]

    The ‘over my dead body’ maternity leave? His amendments were to provide executive style payments to middle class mothers which was rejected by the government.

    Does that mean he supported the legislation in it’s final form? If he did then he certainly didn’t make it known because it didn’t fit with the image he was deliberately cultivating i.e. a man who can only say No!

  3. Almost 2pm. Have we crashed as yet?

    Thefinnigans TheFinnigans天地有道人无道
    What parliamentary privileges have Slipper abused since he became the Deputy & now The Speaker. If none, then he is Abbott’s problem #auspol
    1 minute ago

  4. http://roboakeshott.com/node/1158


    INDEPENDENT Member for Lyne Rob Oakeshott says he did not seek out the Speaker’s job yesterday following the resignation of Harry Jenkins.
    “At no time did I approach anyone about seeking the Speaker’s Chair,” Mr Oakeshott said.
    “I was, however, approached by the Deputy Leader of the Federal Opposition, Julie Bishop, and some cross-bench colleagues while in the House of Representatives where I spent most of the morning releasing five reports from two committees and voting on five private members’ matters. All of this is available on the parliament’s video footage.
    “Opposition Leader Tony Abbott rang my office shortly after noon to offer the Coalition’s support if I was nominated.
    “I thanked him for the offer but also, in the same phone call, politely rejected the offer.
    “Once again, I congratulate Mr Jenkins on his time as Speaker and welcome 2012 under the watch of new Speaker Peter Slipper,” Mr Oakeshott said.
    Media Contact: Sharon Fuller – Ph. 0429 787320]

    Also a pdf version

  5. ISP cant be forced to police illegal downloads of its customers

    [BRUSSELS – Internet service providers cannot be forced to block their users from downloading songs illegally, as such an order would breach EU rules, Europe’s highest court said in a ruling welcomed by a consumer group.

    The Luxembourg-based EU Court of Justice (ECJ) issued its verdict on Thursday in a case involving Belgian music royalty collecting society SABAM and Belgian telecom operator Belgacom unit Scarlet.]

    Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/technology/technology-news/court-says-isps-cant-be-forced-to-monitor-illegal-downloads-20111125-1nxxj.html#ixzz1egJ8cXz8

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