Adem-Somyurek
Former Victorian Labor MP Adem Somyurek is being investigated for branch stacking. (Image: AAP/James Ross)

Unity ticket Strong words from state member for Frankston Paul Edbrooke. Referring to apparent dawdling by the Victorian Liberals in response to branch stacking revelations revealed by Nine and 60 Minutes, he bragged that in the Labor party “we sack branch stackers by 9am the next day”:

We’d argue Victorian Labor doesn’t really have grounds for smugness here. Looking back on the Adem Somyurek farrago, remember two things: the branch stacker in question had already once been disgraced and then returned to cabinet; and the damning videos and audio — some shot in Labor MP Anthony Bryne’s electoral office — could only have been provided by someone with serious access.

It’s almost as though the Victorian ALP had already known all about the branch stacking in question for quite some time, and had made a decision about the stacker’s future employment before the investigation aired?

Richard Di Natale tea towel Former Greens leader Richard Di Natale today gives his farewell speech to the Senate — half-aware, because it’s 2020, that a decent chunk of his audience can just stick him on mute and go for a cup of tea. The good doctor will be remembered, depending on who you ask, for professionalising and solidifying the Greens as an entrenched third force in Australian politics — or for sanding away the last vestiges of the Greens’ protest credentials and resolutely failing to grow the party as faith in the major parties plummeted.

Oh, and also as a tea towel. Queensland Senator Larissa Waters is passing the cap, via an email offering donors (of a certain level) a chance to remember Richard:

Yep, you too can own the tea towel emblazoned with a t-shirted Di Natale and a quote that really makes you think (what it makes you think is: “Surely he’s said something more memorable than that in the last decade?”). All for only … Jesus, eight dollars a week? Let’s hope it’s sustainably sourced, at the very least.

CPAC’s roster grows We’ve been keeping an eye on the gathering storm of CPAC 2020, the second iteration of the Australian arm of America’s Conservative Political Action Committee.

Joining the raft of luminaries already booked — and keeping with the Aldi Fox News/Sky after dark theme — is Daisy Cousens, purveyor of the conservative world’s thirstiest obituaries.

Burying the lede It recently came to light that the party that overthrew Bolivia’s deposed president Evo Morales also used the country’s police to force a women into accusing Morales of statutory rape.

After the US-backed interim government filed a criminal complaint against Morales, the woman at the centre of the allegation wrote a letter to the Bolivian ombudsman’s office saying she was a “victim of police harassment”:

They told me that if I did not say everything they imposed on me, they would prosecute me for sedition and terrorism. They forced me to testify under pressure, without a lawyer.

Big news, no? Well not according to the BBC, who reported the original accusation straight with no subsequent amendments, and as yet, no follow up piece.

Wacko watch From Morales to Morals. You can more or less set your watch to it: disgraced dynastic evangelist and Trump supporter Jerry Falwell Jnr has dedicated his every sinew to regulating and condemning other people’s sexuality — be it in regards to abortion, homosexuality, or trans people — all in the name of “family values”.

Imagine our shock finding out a guy like this, a) is allegedly into watching the pool boy sleep with his wife, and b) will throw his own family members under the bus at the first sign of trouble.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
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