Intuitively I feel that there is probably some hollowness at the core of deriving your joy from the misery of others, that there is nothing truly nourishing or fulfilling in the happiness you get from seeing others fail. In saying that, I am riding on a dangerously powerful natural high from the news that, despite claiming victory at the end of March, David Leyonhjelm has not been elected to the NSW Legislative Council.
Back in January, Leyonhjelm announced his intention to retire from federal politics so that he could better address his pet ‘nanny state’ issues at a state level. This plan did not work out quite so well as he would have liked, as he did not get elected. In a lengthy Facebook post, Leyonhjelm largely blamed the loss on One Nation and fewer voters confusing the Liberal Democrats with the Liberal Party:
We have always known our libertarian base is small but we usually also attract protest voters and those who confuse us with the Liberal Party. In this case our ballot position worked against voter confusion while the presence of One Nation and burgeoning support for the Shooters Party syphoned protest votes away from us.
But far more important than any of his griping about why he is exiting politics is the fact that he has announced that exit, stating that his life as a politician is over. We thought we’d revisit some of the greatest* hits from one of the most proudly obnoxious people to sit in the Senate.
Inviting fascist creep Milo Yiannopoulos to Parliament
Much like how the Nothing in The Neverending Story feeds on negative emotion, Leyonhjelm thrived on doing dumb shit to piss people off. Rarely providing any substantive insight or guidance on actual policy in the country, his MO in Parliament was more or less just to be a huge shit in the hopes of getting noticed. Case in point: inviting Nazi-adjacent grifter Milo Yiannopoulos (who made his bones sanitising the messages of white nationalists) to give a talk at Parliament House.
Doing a parody of the National Apology to the Stolen Generations about tax
Possessing the cultural sensitivity of an out-of-control truck, Leyonhjelm decided for whatever reason to give the long overdue National Apology to the Stolen Generations the Weird Al treatment and turn it into a speech about how taxes are too high and how vital social services are a waste of time. Lovely guy!
Cracking jokes immediately in the wake of the 2017 Bourke Street car attack
While there’s a pretty broad consensus among the major parties that Australia’s gun laws are pretty spot-on, Leyonhjelm made a career out of advocating for looser restrictions on firearms, especially semi-automatics. Because he’s a huge shithead, this is an argument he would usually try to mount in the wake of local and international mass shootings and terror attacks — and occasionally during, as well. The 2017 Bourke Street car attack saw six people killed and 36 people injured, which was not enough to stop Leyonhjelm from cracking jokes about it as it happened:
Probably one of those semi-automatic assault cars. https://t.co/8oUYMryALl
— David Leyonhjelm (@DavidLeyonhjelm) January 20, 2017
Just a real, all-round fuckhead.
Calling Malcolm Turnbull a pussy for suggesting he should retract shitty comments he made to Sarah Hanson-Young
There are times in life where you realise you simply must apologise for something that you have done — that time has never, ever occurred in Leyonhjelm’s life. While implying that a fellow senator is sexually promiscuous (and casting that as a negative) on national television might be a career-ending move for some, for Leyonhjelm it was just another chance to prove that he is a remorseless ass.
Having to fork out $4300 to the council because he didn’t register his pool
Not really terrible this one, it’s just funny.
Having a meltdown because a practice he vociferously defended was directed him
Last but definitely not least: After consistently defending the shitty, gross and frequently sexist ways Wicked Campers decorate their vans, Leyonhjelm went off his nut when real slogans from vans with his name substituted in them were decorated on a van that was driven to his house by The Chaser. Pretty weird how slogans that weren’t sexist when they were about women suddenly became homophobic when they were about him. Pretty weird indeed.