Lost in translation:

Prime Minister John Howard: “Senator Campbell has behaved with total honour and total integrity … he’s done the decent thing .” (Translation: “Campbell’s resignation should do the trick. Now we can keep kicking Rudd and I’ll sling Ian a ministerial job next year if we get back. He’s a good soldier for the party”).

Senator Ian Campbell: ”The reason I have resigned is I do not want there to be any distraction away from the public’s focus on Mr Rudd’s concealment of what he has done.” (Translation: “I resigned because the PM ordered me to and said it was the best contribution I could make to destroying Rudd’s credibility, and if this works he’ll fix me up next year”).

Treasurer Peter Costello: “Anyone who deals with Mr Brian Burke is morally and politically compromised.” (Translation: ”When I say anyone, I mean any one of them. You have to admit it was one of my better lines. Pity about the collateral damage to Campbell, though)”.

Opposition Leader Kevin Rudd: “Mr Howard was deploying standards that were invented on the run in Parliament last Thursday, standards which did not exist before last Thursday.” (Translation: ”Mr Howard has deployed a political acumen that appeared to have deserted him before last Thursday”).