Politics

This Trainwreck Interview Suggests Barnaby Joyce Is Probably Going To Get Rolled

The guy most likely to roll him says "there's no challenge at the moment".

Barnaby Joyce’s main rival for leadership of the National Party gave an absolute trainwreck of an interview on Sky News today, awkwardly dodging the question of whether he personally supports Joyce seven times before grudgingly saying he does.

Nationals MP Michael McCormack, who’s tipped as next in line to the Deputy Prime Ministership, following the Joyce scandals, also dodged quite a few questions about whether he personally intends to challenge Joyce’s party leadership, ultimately just saying that there’s “no challenge at the moment”.

In fact, “at the moment” was kind of the theme of the interview, which sounds like real bad news for Joyce given that the Nationals are meeting next Monday to discuss the situation.

Is it on? It just might be.

It’s hard to overstate just how awkward McCormack’s interview today was. Multiple times, Sky News host Ashleigh Gillon asked whether McCormack supported Joyce, and each time he’d begin to start some tangential, totally unrelated sentence about Barnaby. He continued to do it even after Gillon had called him out on it several times, leading to an exchange that basically went like this:

Gillon: Does Barnaby Joyce still have your support as Nationals leader.

McCormack: Well, Barnaby Joyce has the support of the National Party, and Barnaby Joyce is our leader. He’s taking a week off —

Gillon: No, sorry, I’m asking you personally. You’ve been touted as the most likely person to take over as Nationals leader, so I’m asking again, does Barnaby Joyce continue have your support as Nationals leader?

McCormack: Barnaby Joyce has done a very good job.

It was awkward, and weird, and did not bode well at all for Joyce’s job security.

McCormack’s interview wasn’t the only bad news for Barnaby today either. The latest Newspoll reveals that 65 percent of voters reckon Joyce should resign as leader of the Nationals, and he’s been copping bad press all weekend after spending last week openly feuding with Malcolm Turnbull via duelling press conferences.

Oh, and people are also still mad about the hypocritical infidelity and flagrant misuse of public funds that started this whole thing. We hope Joyce is enjoying his enforced holiday this week, because it might just become permanent.

At this point, you might be wondering who McCormack actually is, and whether he’ll be a better and less controversial leader than Joyce.

Unfortunately, probably not — we regret to inform you that McCormack is that guy who was forced to apologise less than a year ago for a wildly homophobic editorial he wrote in 1993, which featured lines such as “unfortunately gays are here and, if the disease their unnatural acts helped spread doesn’t wipe out humanity, they’re here to stay”.

And I mean, sure, he reckons he’s moved on from that, but it’d be heaps nice if the Nationals could just find someone without a history of extremely questionable behaviour to be the Deputy Prime Minister of this country. Just a thought.