NEVER BANK ON A SELF-SERVING USER
BY spectacularly dumping on the party that put her into parliament, Julia Banks made herself a hero this week — but only to people who hate the Liberal Party and who would never vote for it.
Her speech, carefully timed to ambush a prime ministerial media conference, was made “on indulgence”. That’s a technical concept meaning by leave of the Speaker. And it was indeed indulgent in every sense.
It was self-serving, selfimportant and self-deluded. Above all, though, it was a betrayal of the real Liberals who worked hard to win the election in her seat; because they thought that she respected them, and the values of the party that they serve without any hope of personal reward or advancement.
In 16 years working for members of parliament, I came across thousands of Liberal Party members. There was a fringe of zealots and eccentrics, as you’d expect in any organisation trying to make change for the better.
There was a hard core of careerists using the party to further their personal ambitions to “be someone”, by entering parliament and climbing the greasy pole of power.
The vast majority, though, joined the party because they supported free enterprise, small business and personal choice, while also respecting the family and the other institutions that have served this country well. They were never going to be political staffers, let alone MPs, and would normally only serve as branch office-bearers