News – AU – Craig Kelly resigns from the Liberal Party to sit on Crossbench, leaving government with a majority of one seat

0
0

The man behind the federal government, Craig Kelly, has resigned from the Liberal Party and will take a seat on the Crossbench

The ABC has been informed that Mr. Kelly presented his resignation letter to Prime Minister Scott Morrison during today’s session in the party room

It is assumed that he will sit on the Crossbench but will continue to feed the government – which means he will vote with the government on bills or laws related to the budget

Mr Kelly was recently criticized by the Prime Minister for promoting alternative therapies for COVID-19 and spreading misinformation about vaccines on social media

The ABC understands that Mr. Kelly told the party room that he didn’t want to distract the government

The move means that the government will now have a majority of one seat in the House of Representatives, but will have to provide a spokesman – currently Tony Smith – to oversee the Chamber

That means the government has 75 out of 151 seats on its benches, one less than what is required for a full majority

The spokesman has authority to cast a vote when a vote is tied, but Mr Smith previously said that he would be reluctant to vote for the government in this situation

“If I am the best representative of the electorate for my area, and if I am faithful to the oath I took when I was sworn in as a Member of Parliament, and to speak openly and fearlessly, I must do that”More from the cross bench than the back bench of the government,” he said

He said the fact that he was recently disguised by Prime Minister Scott Morrison did not lead to his decision to quit

The controversial MP had to be approached more than once by Mr Morrison recently after Mr Kelly repeatedly reported unproven coronavirus treatments and questioned the safety of vaccines on his Facebook page

The Prime Minister made it clear that he expects the backbencher to follow and respect the health advice of the official authorities

We recognize the Aboriginal people and the Torres Strait Islander as the first Australians and traditional administrators of the countries where we live, learn and work

This service may contain material from Agence France-Presse (AFP), APTN, Reuters, AAP, CNN, and the BBC World Service that is copyrighted and cannot be reproduced

AEST = Australian Eastern Standard Time, 10 hours before GMT (Greenwich Mean Time)

Australian Liberal Party, Craig Kelly, Scott Morrison, Crossbencher

News – AU – Craig Kelly leaves Liberal Party to sit on Crossbench and leaves government with majority from a seat

Source: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-02-23/craig-kelly-quits-liberal-party/13182994