Australian politics is rapidly devolving into drama I haven’t seen since the Year 9 locker room. Deputy PM Barnaby Joyce has now been implicated in a leaked text calling Scott Morrison a “liar” and a “hypocrite”.
The texts have been confirmed by both The Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian. They were sent from Joyce to Brittany Higgins through a third party.
According to the SMH, they were sent through an anonymous minister ‘cos Joyce didn’t have Higgins’ phone number.
In the texts, Joyce called Morrison “a hypocrite and a liar”.
“Tell BH [Brittany Higgins] I and Scott, he is Scott to me until I have to recognise his office, don’t get along. He is a hypocrite and liar from my observations and that is over a long time,” Joyce wrote.
“I have never trusted him and I dislike how he earnestly rearranges the truth to a lie.”
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the texts were sent to Brittany Higgins on March 22 2021, a month after she spoke out about her alleged rape in Parliament House.
Barnaby Joyce has admitted he sent the texts and apologised to the PM for them.
“In the last 24 hours I have become aware that a screenshot of a text message has been circulating among third parties that contains comments I made in March 2021 when I was a backbencher,” he said, as per News.com.au.
“I have unreservedly apologised to the Prime Minister for my comments.
“I have worked extremely closely with the Prime Minister over the last seven months since I returned to the role of Deputy Prime Minister; and the Prime Minister is a person of high integrity and honesty in what is possibly the most difficult job in the nation.”
All I have to say is yikes!! Yikes indeed!!
PM Scott Morrison has also acknowledged the texts in a statement to The Australian.
“He sincerely apologised and I immediately accepted his apology in good faith. I understand Barnaby was in a different headspace last year, both professionally and personally, and so I know he genuinely no longer feels this way,” he said.
“Relationships change over time. Politicians are humans beings too. We all have our frailties and none of us are perfect. Since coming to the role of DPM, it is fair to say that we both positively surprised each other.
“We were never close before this and never pretended to be. But in these roles we have really found our rhythm, as we have concluded AUKUS, settled our climate change policy and continued to fight the pandemic.”
This particular text leaking incident comes just days after Glady Berejiklian and an unnamed Liberal MP allegedly called the PM a “horrible horrible person” in a text convo.
Berejiklian said in a statement that she had “no recollections of such messages”. Barnaby Joyce had criticised the person who leaked the alleged texts on Friday morning.
“You are doing this for the purpose of malice, for the purpose of vindictiveness and for your own personal grudge and therefore, it is to be disregarded,” he told the ABC.
Honestly, who needs reality TV when you have politics, eh?