One Nation declares Nationals ‘no longer party of the bush’ – politics live | Australia news

We start another day by talking about a train wreck interview performance from a National party leader – this time, Bridget McKenzie.

This time, over the dairy code, which is what sparked calls for her to be scrapped as leader just a few weeks ago. After three years of discussions, the Nationals looked ready to move forward with the much vaunted code. Then One Nation cottoned on to it, and started making a lot of very public noises over it, including withholding votes on non-crucial legislation, until one was implemented. It was a stunt more than anything – One Nation still turned up for every vote that mattered, but it was a very loud stunt and it forced McKenzie into saying the timetable would be moved up, meaning the code would be implemented early next year, instead of mid next year. Pauline Hanson claimed victory.

Now, the National party MPs who had spent the past three years working on the code (marrying up the different state industries is a little difficult, but hey – that’s the federation for you) were pretty annoyed that One Nation was taking credit for their work and went on the offensive.

Next thing you know, there are backbench drought assistance submissions and Barnaby Joyce is anywhere a blinking camera light is featured and the Nats came together for peace in our times.

Except, that’s not possible with all the stuff that is going on right now. McKenzie looked stressed in Senate question time yesterday, and her colleagues are openly questioning whether she is up to the job. It wouldn’t matter so much if they weren’t also questioning whether Michael McCormack was also up to the job, and after his tone-deaf- head-in-the sand performance yesterday morning over climate change and its link to the catastrophic early bushfire season, well, things aren’t exactly great in the Nationals group chat.

So McKenzie got up this morning and spoke to ABC radio about the dairy code and just how on top of it she all is.

Except – she’s not. And she had to concede she didn’t have all the answers about why changes have been made to the exposure draft. And she had to admit that it more than likely wouldn’t be ready by January.

“We either want to get it done quickly or we want to get it done right,” she said.

“I am not going to rush to put out a code that is not going to be fit for purpose and not going to actually work in all eight of our [dairy] regions across the country.”

That sound you hear is Hanson skipping into work today.

We’ll cover that, plus the Senate, plus the government response to the on-going bushfire emergency.

You’ve got a one-coffee Amy on your hands, so I will fix that, but you have the incomparable Mike Bowers, Katharine Murphy, Paul Karp and Sarah Martin to make up for my failings. Which may include, but are not limited to, typing diary instead of dairy every now and then.


Let’s get into it.

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