Christian Kerr writes:

Queensland Premier Peter Beattie
will be forced to undertake his fourth reshuffle in nine months after
former health minister Gordon Nuttall was forced to stand down over
allegations he had misled a parliamentary committee over the Bundaberg
Hospital affair.

This follows other amazing recent events among
top Beattie ministers – like the memory issues that plagued former
treasurer Terry Mackenroth. The Courier-Mail reports today:

Premier Peter Beattie will mount a last-ditch effort to
spare former minister Gordon Nuttall from criminal charges over claims
he lied to a parliamentary hearing

Mr Nuttall became the
latest casualty of the health crisis yesterday when he resigned as
primary industries minister after the Crime and Misconduct Commission
recommended criminal proceedings be considered against him.

a 15-week investigation, the CMC said State Parliament should decide
whether Mr Nuttall is prosecuted under the Criminal Code, which carries
up to a seven-year jail term, or simply answer contempt of Parliament
charges which can result in a fine.

Mr Beattie has taken the extraordinary step of recalling Parliament tomorrow from summer recess to vote on Mr Nuttall’s fate.

Nuttall will almost certainly escape criminal proceedings when Labor
MPs use their massive majority to keep him out of the courts…

there’s the rub. No upper house. No proper scrutiny. And a bloody
useless opposition, as Ross Fitzgerald recounts in today’s Australian. But no doubt there’ll be plenty more sleaze.