I'm offering you nothing - Julia Gillard's response to dumped senator Trish Crossin
DUMPED Labor Senator Trish Crossin has revealed the brutal details of the night her political career was terminated at the Lodge in an "unfair dismissal", including the moment the Prime Minister told her: "I am offering you nothing."
Ms Crossin, who will be awarded a taxpayer-funded pension for life when she leaves politics at the next election, has confirmed she asked Julia Gillard for an appointment to a board or an ambassadorship on learning she would be dumped, a suggestion angrily rebuffed by the Prime Minister.
Accusing the Prime Minister's office of asking her to sign off on a press release that falsely claimed she backed the installation of Olympian Nova Peris as her replacement, Ms Crossin also said Ms Gillard had conceded she would win a rank-and-file ballot.
However, she said Ms Gillard insisted her "legacy" as Labor leader must include installing an Aboriginal woman in the Senate.
You can read the whole story at the Herald Sun website.
This is a somewhat unusual story - no make that usual in politics, unusual in the real world of real relationships between people.
First up Samantha Maiden has scored an exclusive interview with Trish Crossin, where Trish has spoken very, very freely.
Samantha Maiden reports in the story that
"Supporters of Kevin Rudd's return to the leadership are using the story of Ms Crossin's political execution to try to push Gillard supporters to switch camps this week amid claims Mr Rudd is closing the 71:31 gap at the last leadership ballot to just a handful of votes."
Fair enough, that's what politicians do. But in Camp Kev's eagerness to get Trish Crossin to tell all to Sam Maiden, we've got a very rare glimpse into a first-hand account of the Labor indulgence and patronage machine and the way it operates - to the benefit of the chosen few but you pay the bills.
Trish told us that her immediate reaction to news she'd lose the seat in the Senate was to expect a sinecure in return. And she nominated the big daddy of them all, an Ambassadorship.
You see people's true character in moments of truth like this one. Julia wanted an aborigine and Julia got one. What a disgraceful display of real contemporary Labor values. A prime minister who wants to be able to deliver after-dinner speeches in her dotage with words like, "“We share a purpose that goes to the very integrity of this nation, its founding, it history and its future. I am proud of the fact that I was the first Labor Prime Minister to bring into our parliament, an aboriginal woman". And that's it, my legacy - stuff you Trish and stuff any pretence at fairness, I want an Aborigine.
Then from Trish, OK, I've heard you, now what's in it for me - it'll have to be big, Ambassador to Paris?
Sam Maiden's last paragraph says this
"The next day, Ms Crossin was sent a draft press release by the Prime Minister's chief of staff Ben Hubbard which included a line from Senator Crossin endorsing Ms Peris as her replacement, despite her telling the Prime Minister she would not do so. Senator Crossin instructed the Prime Minister's office to remove the line from the official press release because it was a lie."
I can't help but wonder whether that Ambassadorship might have made it true.