Malcolm Turnbull says there is 'nothing to see here' as the Senate starts to crumble.
Malcolm Turnbull says there is 'nothing to see here' as the Senate starts to crumble.

Strange Politics: Tiger wrestling and senatorial scone theft

OH THAT burning pile of rubble and twisted metal?

I wouldn't worry about that. Heck, I am pretty sure, yep definitely at least 93% certain, the Senate is supposed to look like that anyway.

Federal politicians have been doing their best Sergeant Schultz "I see nothing" impressions this week as the Senate bus veered off course, took out a couple of pedestrians and slammed to a crunching halt against a wall.

Family First senator Bob Day resigned amid his construction company's collapse and then, almost as though it were not purely coincidental, calls were made to refer him to the High Court over whether he was even validly elected to begin with.

Something to do with his electorate office - apparently he used to own it but sold it to associates after he was elected, raising questions about whether he broke the law by having a relationship with a company that gets government contracts.

But One Nation Senator Rod Culleton's story is much more interesting.

He is also likely to be referred to the High Court over a conviction relating to the time he pinched a $7.50 key - which seems pretty dang pricey - from a tow truck driver who was trying to repossess his lease car.

The conviction was later annulled, but the constitution bars anyone convicted of any crime punishable by a prison term of one year or more from holding office in the Senate.

The Senate will decide on Monday whether to refer them both to the High Court, then it could take months for the court to decide whether there was any foul play.

Meanwhile the Senate is paralysed and the government has no chance of getting any bills passed. The government's manager of business in the Senate Mitch Fifield was asked on radio five times whether the planned building watchdog legislation had any chance of getting through.

Five times he skirted the question.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull politely asked everyone to move along because there was nothing to see here. "There is no chaos, the Senate will continue," he told reporters, guffawing and scoffing at the silly suggestion everything had fallen to bits.

But the best stuff came from Mr Culleton's mouth.

During a five-minute interview, he assured the public he was "going out as an opening batsman and trying to hit a hundred", said nicking those keys was "no different to taking a scone from someone's plate" and said he actually offered to buy the tow-truck driver a nice upmarket brass key to replace the dodgy old flimsy thing he took.

"You grab a tiger by the tail, you gotta hang on," he continued.

"This thing's scratchin' but I'm still hangin' on."

Personally I hope Culleton stays in parliament, if only so we get to hear more hot takes like those ones.

Meanwhile, being a senator is looking like a pretty cushy job for the foreseeable future - nothing is getting done except some light scone theft and the odd wrestling match with a tiger.

Strange Politics is a satirical column. You can follow Chris Calcino on Twitter.



Woman plucked from crumbling cliff by volunteers

Woman plucked from crumbling cliff by volunteers

"She was scared that if she moved she’d fall down the cliff face"

25 extra firefighters coming to help battle bushfire

25 extra firefighters coming to help battle bushfire

Bushfire near Casino listed as "out of control"

Hackers steal RMS payments from highway contractors

Hackers steal RMS payments from highway contractors

Hackers redirected payments to their own accounts

Local Partners