Whooping Cough: ALP Releases Election Advertisement On Vaccination Cuts

The Victorian ALP has released an election advertisement highlighting cuts to vaccination funding by the Napthine and Abbott governments.

The advertisement uses the slogan: “Under the Liberals you’re on your own.”

  • Watch the advertisement (22s)

Geoff Shaw Suspended By Victorian Parliament; Ken Smith Votes With Government To Defeat ALP Expulsion Move

Geoff Shaw, the member for Frankston in the Victorian Legislative Assembly, has been suspended until September 2, after the former Speaker, Ken Smith, voted to defeat a move by the Labor Opposition to have Shaw expelled.

Napthine

Just before 8.30pm, an amendment to expel Shaw, moved by the Opposition Leader, Daniel Andrews, was voted on and tied 42-42. It was defeated on the casting vote of the Speaker, Christine Fyffe, who accidentally voted in support before correcting herself.

Napthine’s original motion was then carried on the voices. The Speaker then named Geoff Shaw, as required by the motion, and the member for Frankston was suspended.

The support of Shaw’s arch-enemy, Ken Smith, has ensured that the government has some breathing space over the next few months. In the lead-up to today’s debate, Smith had said he would support the ALP’s move to expel Shaw.

Shaw has until September 2 to repay around $6000 for improper use of his parliamentary vehicle and fuel card. He is also required to apologise to the House. Failure to do so could result in his expulsion in September. [Read more...]


Denis Napthine Moves To Suspend Geoff Shaw Until September 2

The Victorian Premier, Denis Napthine, has given notice of a motion he intends to move tomorrow that would result in the suspension of Geoff Shaw until September 2.

Napthine

The motion seeks to have the Speaker “name” Shaw. It suspends him without pay for 11 sitting days. It requires Shaw to repay $6838.44 for improper use of his parliamentary vehicle and parliamentary entitlements. It instructs him to apologise to the Legislative Assembly and to the people of Victoria.

The motion provides for Shaw to be expelled if he does not comply with its requirements.

Napthine gave notice of the motion after the Legislative Assembly today passed three Appropriation Bills that constituted the government’s Budget. He also held a press conference to explain the government’s intentions.

Earlier, at the start of Question Time, the government refused leave for Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews to move a motion to bring on an immediate consideration of the Privileges Committee report on Shaw. The ALP wants Shaw expelled. Andrews described Napthine’s move as a “wet lettuce”.

Attention will now turn to the former Speaker, the Liberal member for Bass, Ken Smith, who has indicated he will support Labor’s move to expel Shaw. [Read more...]


Daniel Andrews Commits To Passing Victorian Budget; Calls On Napthine To Consult Governor

The Victorian Leader of the Opposition, Daniel Andrews, said tonight he wants Premier Denis Napthine to join him in calling on the Victorian Governor to seek a solution to the political crisis besetting the government. He says the ALP will pass the Budget but did not commit himself to a position on moving a motion of no-confidence.

Andrews

Andrews said that tomorrow morning he will refer claims by Napthine that Geoff Shaw demanded a particular judicial appointment to the Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission (IBAC).

Andrews said he wanted to meet with Napthine at 11am tomorrow morning and proposed that the two of them call upon the Governor, Alex Chernov, to seek his advice on how to resolve the crisis.

Andrews said: “I will meet with Napthine at 11am and make clear to him that Labor will pass his Budget. I will also make it clear that the most appropriate thing for us to do is for both of us to visit the Governor and see how this constitutional crisis might be resolved.”

Andrews call upon Napthine to put the interests of the people above his own political interests. He said: “It’s become each and every day, more and more obvious that this isn’t the government the people voted for three years ago… We are not getting the leadership we desperately need.”

The coming days “are not a time for political gamesmanship”, Andrews said. He said he didn’t fear the verdict of the people of Victoria. “My obligation is to give them a choice.”

This is “undoubtedly a constitutional crisis”, Andrews said. “This is a shambolic and chaotic government…We should put the people first and seek the Governor’s advice.”

  • Listen to Andrews (21m)

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Defiant Napthine Says He Won’t Be Held To Ransom By Shaw; Says It’s Now Up To Andrews

A defiant Victorian Premier Denis Napthine has held a 7pm press conference to say that he won’t be held to ransom by Geoff Shaw.

Napthine

Napthine said the ball was now in Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews’s court. “He has said he will never accept the tainted vote of Mr. Shaw,” Napthine said. “We will continue to govern.”

Napthine acknowledged that he now had little choice but to wait and see if the Opposition will move a no-confidence motion when the Parliament meets next week.

  • Listen to Napthine and Ryan (21m)

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  • Watch the press conference (17m)

During the press conference, which was also attended by the Deputy Premier, Peter Ryan, Napthine said today’s meeting between Andrews and the Governor, Alex Chernov, was a regular meeting which was scheduled two weeks ago. Later, the Governor’s office issued a statement confirming this. (See statement below) [Read more...]


Napthine Government On The Brink As Shaw Supports No-Confidence Motion And Governor Consults Opposition Leader

The Victorian Governor, Alex Chernov, has today met with the Opposition Leader, Daniel Andrews, whilst the maverick Liberal MP, Geoff Shaw, has said he will support a no-confidence motion against the Napthine government.

Donohue

The meeting was reported on Channel 7 at 6pm. Reporter Brendan Donohue said the meeting was to discuss the “instability” in parliament. It is not known if Chernov sought Premier Denis Napthine’s permission to consult with the Opposition Leader. In the constitutional crisis of 1975, Prime Minister Gough Whitlam gave the Governor-General, Sir John Kerr, permission to consult with the Opposition Leader, Malcolm Fraser.

Earlier, the member for Frankston, Geoff Shaw, said he would support a no-confidence motion against the Napthine government. He said he no longer trusted the government and expressed concern that the government would allow the former Speaker, Ken Smith, to vote with the ALP to suspend of expel Shaw on the basis of a Privileges Committee report into his use of travel allowances. [Read more...]


Premiers Rebel Over Federal Budget Cuts; Demand COAG Meeting Before July 1

The States have rebelled over Federal Government Budget cuts, claiming that the impact will be felt on July 1, and demanding Prime Minister Tony Abbott convene a COAG meeting before then.

Newman

The State Premiers and Territory Chief Ministers met in Sydney today at a meeting called by the Queensland LNP Premier, Campbell Newman. The Western Australian Premier, Colin Barnett, was the only leader not to attend.

Newman said the meeting “firmly and unequivocally rejected” the Budget cuts. The political leaders demanded an urgent meeting of the Council of Australia Governments before July 1. Newman said: “Contrary to what the PM said today, there are immediate impacts to frontline services.”

He said the $180 million cut to hospitals would be felt immediately with about 1200 sub-acute beds being cut in hospitals. “There was a national partnership on preventative health – we all received letters saying that is terminated.” [Read more...]