This Liberal MP Just Quit The Party With An Explosive Speech Slamming Her Colleagues
BREAKING: The Liberal party.
The government has lost yet another seat in the House of Representatives, after Liberal MP Julia Banks quit the party in an explosive speech in Parliament today. She will now sit in Parliament as an independent.
The loss of Banks means the Coalition holds just 74 out of the 150 seats in the House of Representatives, putting it firmly in the minority. That’s a very dangerous position to be in, and means that if Labor and the entire crossbench unite, they’ll have the 76 member absolute majority necessary to force a vote on all kinds of legislation, such as referring Peter Dutton to the high court.
Banks has guaranteed she will vote with the government supply and confidence motions, but has been outspoken in the past on the need to get children off Nauru. She may also vote in favour of a federal anti-corruption body, which the government currently opposes.
Still, this could just be a death blow for the government, which was already weakened after losing Wentworth to Independent Kerryn Phelps.
Banks made a personal statement to the House of Representatives this morning slamming the Liberal Party for its behaviour this year, saying that the party as it stands no longer aligns with her values.
“I’ve always put the people before the party,” she said. “The people of Chisholm elected me as I promised them that I would be their representative under the leadership of the former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, and former deputy leader and foreign minister Julie Bishop; both visionary and inspiring leaders of sensible, centrist liberal values, with integrity and intellect.”
She described the recent Liberal leadership spill as a “coup” which she said was “aided by many MPs trading their vote for a leadership change in exchange for their individual promotion, preselection endorsements, or silence.”
“Their actions were undeniably for themselves, for their position in the party, their power, their personal ambition — not for the Australian people, who we represent. But for what people voted for in the 2016 election, not for stability, and disregarding that teamwork and unity delivers success.”
Julia Banks is sitting as an independent for the rest of the parliamentary term. Minority minority government.
— Rick Morton (@SquigglyRick) November 27, 2018
She then derided the government’s actions since the spill as being all about “political point scoring” rather than “timely, practical, sensible decisions”, and also stressed the urgent need for greater representation of women in Parliament, something she said was “years behind” in both major parties.
“The voice of the Australian people has been loud and clear,” she concluded, and then announced that she would become an Independent member of Parliament effective immediately. Absolute power move.
You can read Banks’ entire smackdown speech on her website, though it appears to have crashed after everyone flocked there to do just that. In the meantime, it’s available on Twitter below:
— Julia Banks MP (@juliabanksmp) November 27, 2018