Pauline Hanson’s One Nation lost another federal parliamentarian today, with NSW senator Brian Burston announcing he was quitting the party, but will remain in the Senate, following a spectacular falling out with his boss a fortnight ago.
The falling out began at the end of May when Burston announced he’d defy Hanson and back the Coalition government’s company tax cuts.
In response, Hanson went on TV and cried, declaring “this isn’t the first time Brian’s stabbed me in the back”.
She then called on him to resign and hand the seat back to PHON.
Burston said in a statement today that he was leaving “with a heavy heart”, but his relationship with Hanson was “irrevocable”.
His departure means the three senators elected alongside Hanson in 2016 – Burston, Malcolm Roberts and Rod Culleton – are now gone.
Roberts was forced out by the High Court because he was a dual citizen. His replacement, Fraser Anning, left the party before he was sworn in, and now sits as an independent.
Culleton stormed out of the party at the end of 2016 before being booted from the Senate by the High Court because of a bankruptcy case, giving the spot back to One Nation. His West Australian replacement, Senator Peter Georgiou, is the only remaining PHON member alongside Hanson.
In a parting swipe against his former boss, Burston told Fairfax Media that One Nation “should be called Gone Nation”.
As the tweet below from ABC election analyst Antony Green demonstrates, he has a point.
Of 30 MPs elected on the One Nation ticket, 19 resigned in their first term, with others were booted from parliament for a range of reasons. Just three made it through to the next election and the voters have only re-elected one.
That’s a success rate of around 3%.
30 MPs have been elected to represent One Nation. Six are current members. 19 resigned in their first term, two were disqualified in first term, only three lasted long enough to face re-election, two were defeated and only one One Nation MP has ever been re-elected. #auspol
— Antony Green (@AntonyGreenABC) June 13, 2018
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