|Peter Wellington, |
The Opposition Leader Lawrence Springborg says Labor's minority government would make the Queensland Parliament complicated.
But Lawrence: 44 ALP +1 Independent = 45.
LNP = 42.
Nothing complicated about that.
Numbers beat logic any day.
Just ask the kids in Grade 1 at the Applethorpe State School in your electorate.
The Courier-Mail reports:
QUEENSLAND kingmaker Peter Wellington is shaping as hugely powerful parliamentary figure after expressing his desire to become Speaker.
THE independent MP, whose support gives Labor a single-seat majority to govern, has been quick to indicate his interest in the Speaker's role."I think anyone would love to be Speaker, it's a great privilege to be Speaker, but that's a matter for parliament," he told ABC radio.
If Mr Wellington became the Speaker, he would both preside over the house and have the casting vote in deadlocked matters.
There's potential for that to occur regularly with Labor holding 44 seats, the Liberal National Party 42 and Katter's Australian Party - who are expected to most often side with the LNP - two.
Agriculture Minister Bill Byrne has already backed Mr Wellington for the pivotal role.
"Personally I would have no problem whatsoever if Peter is the Speaker," Mr Byrne said.
"He's a very principled operator and I think he'd make a great contribution."
LNP leader Lawrence Springborg said his party hadn't discussed the Speaker's role as yet, but warned Labor's minority government would make parliament complicated.
"It's totally surreal in comparison to what we saw in the last parliamentary term," he said.
"So whatever way it goes, with regards to Speaker or otherwise, minority government has a range of challenges."
Mr Wellington, who also helped Labor form a minority government in 1998 under Peter Beattie, is in a position to possibly become Queensland's first non-partisan Speaker since Henry Edward Ward in 1888.
The long-time Sunshine Coast MP said the standing orders made it clear the Speaker was chosen after a vote on the floor of parliament.
"I've certainly seen occasions where there have been nominations for independents to be Speaker, but that's never succeeded," Mr Wellington said.
"So it will be interesting to see what happens when parliament resumes."
Parliament is due to reconvene in March.