The Guardian reports: Speculation about Michael McCormack’s position is mounting
Asked if he wanted the leadership, disgraced ex-leader Barnaby Joyce said: “I have always said that if anything was offered to me, I would take it. “It is faux modesty to say if you are offered a job, you’ll turn it down.”
Former deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce in Question Time. Photo: Alex Ellinghausen
The National Party will have to draft him. They may be stupid enough to do that
If they do, it will indicate that neither the party nor Joyce Joyce has any idea of the way he is perceived by Australian public nor of the damage he would do to the National Party brand if he were to resume the leadership. But such a move would also damage the Coalition as a whole with a man as Deputy Prime Minister who was publicly disgraced and dismissed in the most ignominious way, returning to the leadership.
Not only returning to the leadership, but returning unrepentant.
It’s not as if Joyce enjoys the kind of support that Donald Trump enjoys amongst female Republican voters who dismiss his affairs with prostitutes as “fake news”.
He clearly doesn’t.
The Guardian also reports that Alana Johnson, a founding member of the peak representative group for rural women, Australian Women In Agriculture said: “I think rural women are angry at Barnaby Joyce and his behaviour and they would be very disappointed if National party thought he is the calibre of leader they want,”
But Barnaby Joyce has never let anything get in the way of his own personal ambition. He doesn’t realise that his returning to the leadership will damage the National Party’s vote, particularly in Queensland.
It will also damage the Coalition which does not have a great reputation for its treatment of women because his return to the leadership would be seen as an indication of the Coalition’s continuing inability to deal with perceptions of its insensitivity to issues concerning women.
Lucy Gichuhi, Julia Banks and Julie Bishop highlight the Coalition’s problems with women
As John Anderson, a formal leader of the National party and former Deputy Prime Minister said so eloquently: It’s really important that we recognise that it’s very hard to pick up the baton when the captain on the bridge finds that he can’t navigate the ship anymore.”
The great thing about Barnaby Joyce’s return to the leadership of the National Party is that it would bring together two damaging issues for the Coalition.
The first is the problems associated with the Coalition’s attitudes towards women where Barnaby Joyce has been the poster boy.
The second is the problem of the leadership instability within the Coalition where Barnaby has also had a starring role.
The Labor Party probably can’t believe its luck.