Brandis, Barnaby and co: Travel Rorts 2.0?

7 Oct

This is not petty as Reith is trying to make out. It is an issue that is coming to a head and it needs to. Whatever persuasion of politics one aligns to, rorting the taxpayer is reprehensible and the rules must be tightened and allowances exposed to the taxpayer on a regular basis.


Freshly minted Prime Minister John Howard learned back in 1996 that it’s one thing to hold a government to high standards of conduct when in opposition, and another thing altogether to comply with those standards once you ARE the government.

Howard introduced a Code of Ministerial Conduct to fulfil his election campaign pledge to run a ‘clean government’. The Code required ministers to have no shares in companies that related to their portfolio responsibilities and to be truthful in parliament.

Before ultimately watering down the Code to remove the divestment of shares requirement, Howard lost seven Cabinet members for breaches of the Code. Howard also sacked his Chief of Staff Grahame Morris and long-serving office manager Fiona McKenna for ‘not alerting him’ to related travel allowance issues.

It was an expensive, early mis-step by Howard but one that ironically turned to his advantage.

Howard benefited from Morris being replaced by…

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