Has Dan Andrews finally had enough?
Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews has received massive backlash after his appalling rant” during a Parliamentary sitting.
The Opposition has accused the politician of disrespecting the House and blatantly ignoring parliamentary protocol.
During the heated Question Time debate, opposition members demanded that the Speaker “rein in” the Premier, with one going as far to request a private meeting to discuss Mr Andrews’ “appalling behaviour”.
Member for Euroa, Steph Ryan, asked the Premier if he’d used taxpayer money to secure likes for his Facebook page and who controlled the account.
Mr Andrews said he “would not be lectured” by a party that spent money on Facebook ads during election time.
A Public Accounts and Estimates hearing revealed that Mr Andrews’ Facebook spend in 2019-2020 was $158,874.
“I’ll never apologise about sending messages to communities ravaged by fire about when to evacuate and I’ll never apologise for sending out advertising to people to get tested for COVID symptoms,” he said.
Mr Andrews spoke over opposition members and ignored the Speaker’s requests for order after a heated debate.
Liberal Party Leader Michael O’Brien went on to accuse the Speaker of being lenient on Mr Andrews.
“You make clear that members must speak through the chair, but the Premier consistently refuses to do that,” he fired.
“He never gets called up, we are sick of this speaker – either apply the rules fairly or don’t apply them at all.”
After apologising for getting “carried away”, Daniel Andrews later ignored the Speaker’s multiple requests for order in the chamber.
Mr O’Brien, Nationals Leader Peter Walsh and Liberal MP Ryan Smith called out the “rant”.
“I note there’s been no mention from you (Speaker) to pull him into line like you have pulled others into line, and I ask that you apply the rules fairly so that the Premier does sit down and gives respect to the chair when it’s asked for,” Mr Smith said.
Nationals Leader Peter Walsh has asked for a private discussion with the speaker for tolerating the behaviour.
“Can I please ask you to council the Premier about his attitude in this house,” Mr Walsh said.
“The tone is set from the top and the Premier’s performance today was absolutely appalling.”
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