Politics

PM says it was easy to forgive Joyce over texts


Prime Minister Scott Morrison says he forgave Barnaby Joyce “quite easily” over a text message the deputy prime minister sent while he was on the backbench calling him a “hypocrite” and “liar”.

Mr Morrison said politics was a “brutal business” and Mr Joyce was simply being human when he expressed his frustrations.

“Politicians, they’re no different to anyone else,” Mr Morrison said.

Barnaby Joyce.
Barnaby Joyce.said yesterday he had offered his resignation over the text messages. (Nine)

“People say things and people feel things. People get angry, people get bitter, of course they do. That’s all of us. And so, who am I to be judging someone else?”

Aptly, the Prime Minister was speaking to reporters in Parramatta, Sydney this morning at an event for “I 4give Day” when he answered a barrage of questions over the scandal.

Mr Morrison said he did not have a very close relationship with Mr Joyce at the time he sent the messages, and his deputy had made it clear he no longer felt that way.

“A prime minister and the deputy prime minister work very closely together. His observations of me and that relationship has completely transformed his view that he had as a backbencher at a time when his head was in a very different place,” Mr Morrison said.

Scott Morrison and Barnaby Joyce.
Scott Morrison and Barnaby Joyce. (Alex Ellinghausen)

Speaking on Today this morning, Finance Minister Simon Birmingham denied the Coalition was imploding months out from a federal election, reiterating Mr Morrison’s comments that Mr Joyce was in a very different headspace when he sent the text messages.

“He was in a pretty dark place, blaming a lot of people for what had put him on the backbench at the time,” Mr Birmingham said.

Mr Barnaby Joyce said he “should never have written the texts”.

“When it came to light a couple of days ago, I rang the prime minister immediately,” he said.

“I offered my resignation and he did not accept my resignation.”



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