Premier faces string of crises

Date

Mining billionaire Clive Palmer has jumped on accusations Queensland's premier may have misled parliament, saying he should resign.

Campbell Newman's statement in parliament on Tuesday that government MP Alex Douglas was happy to step down as chairman of the ethics committee has been disputed.

Dr Douglas says he was pushed, and Mr Newman's statement is "untrue".

He now wants his job back.

Mr Palmer, who threw in his Liberal National Party life membership last week after a long-running war of words with government, says the premier should resign for misleading parliament.

"The premier has no alternative but to resign for misleading parliament and the good people of Queensland over this grubby affair," he said in a statement on Wednesday.

Mr Palmer has also called for Katter's Australian Party's Queensland leader Rob Katter and Labor leader Annastacia Palaszczuk to refer the Mr Newman to the ethics committee.

 

The conflict and disunity in Queensland's Liberal National Party is normal for parties with a huge majority, politician turned lobbyist Santo Santoro says.

Premier Campbell Newman has faced a string of crises, including the loss of his housing minister Bruce Flegg after he failed to disclose contacts with his lobbyist son.

His arts minister and transport chief are embroiled in nepotism allegations.

A veteran MP has defected to Katter's Australian Party, and another MP has threatened to turn independent over concerns about how Mr Newman is running his government.

Now another government MP is claiming he was pushed off an ethics committee and says the premier may have misled parliament by saying he'd wanted to quit the position.

Mr Santoro, a federal Liberal Party vice president, says divisions within Queensland's Liberal National Party are a normal part of a new government settling in.

"What you have now is the natural adjustment that always occurs when a party with a huge majority like the majority Campbell Newman got when elected," Mr Santoro told ABC radio.

"I've seen this happen when the Labor Party had huge majorities at either a state or federal level and I've seen it happen when the Liberal Party in other states has had huge majorities.

"I think it's the normal argy bargy of large governments and of large party rooms."

A Galaxy poll, published in The Courier-Mail on Wednesday, showed almost one in two voters didn't believe the premier had met his promise to be more open and accountable.

It found almost two out of three people believed the new administration was worse or no better than the Labor government had been.

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