It seems Barnaby Joyce’s ambitions to lead the Nationals received a boost today because of a deal he appears to have done with dumped Minister Ian Macfarlane.
But what dirty deal will Barnaby Joyce do to secure Ian Macfarlane’s vote?
And when will Barnaby Joyce start reforming agriculture as opposed to working on his own ambitions?
Every pronouncement Barnaby Joyce makes, every move made is one designed to appeal to Barnaby Joyce’s traditional support base. He puts his own interest ahead of the long-term term interests of Australian agriculture.
• Fell out and later sacked his respected Departmental head, Dr Paul Grimes who was determined to secure much needed reform
• The attempt to move the APVMA and Research & Development Corporations out of Canberra
• His failure to follow through on his promise to reform the cattle sectors levy and research architecture
• The relocation of his Sydney ministerial office to Armidale
• His opposition to much needed Foreign Investment and support of Foreign Investment Review Board changes
• His opposition to the ADM takeover of Graincorp
• His political fix on grains port regulation
• His refusal to accept that further consolidation and corporate participation in agriculture will be crucial to the success of the sector
• His failure to show leadership in the Queensland sugar dispute
• His failure to address climate change in his White Paper
All these moves or lack of them are about playing to the crowd, as his constant attempts to claim credit for developments which have nothing to do with his work; cattle prices being the best example.
Ian Macfarlane is no agrarian socialist, unlike Barnaby Joyce. What will Barnaby Joyce agree to in policy terms to bring him across?
There are many unanswered questions!