Wedding rumors only increase the public’s disdain for politicians

Tony Abbott was one of many lawmakers who attended the Mirabella’s weddings in the year 2006. Tony Abbott claimed over 11,000 dollars in public money to cover travel expenses. As controversy rages over Coalition politicians claiming to charge taxpayers for weddings, Tony Abbott has returned.

There’s no reason an elected official could use to argue to suggest that the Mirabella wedding was a form of official event. The only guests who performed (light) tasks were journalists (and there was no way to declare any expenses from my firm). The simple fact that it was an occasion for socializing was accepted by the officials who didn’t claim it. George Brandis, also on the guest list, who was caught in a separate wedding scandal, traveled with Senator Brett Mason, and neither claimed.

Abbott was questioned by reporters in Bali today, claiming that Abbott was in the position of Leader of the House at the time. Abbott, who was interviewed in Bali today, said that the “Leader of the House of Representatives has certain representational roles.” Abbott concluded his press event while reporters were trying to get him to answer questions.

He has also reimbursed the money (about 600 dollars) to cover expenses incurred during the wedding of Peter Slipper in 2006. That’s a terrible appearance. A judge is trying former Speaker Slipper for allegedly misusing entitlements.

A number of Coalition faces are turning red and should be after revelations are made regarding their previous assertions. Weddings have always been a honey pot.

Brandis and Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce have willingly offered to pay claims for the wedding in 2011 of the shock jock Michael Smith. Brandis said after the scandal that the marriage was about encouraging “collaboration.” Smith was involved in Labor scandals. This could be “primarily a professional rather than a social engagement.” (From the reports of the report, he transformed work into a game.)

Joyce, Teresa Gambaro, and Julie Bishop were given a free trip from Gina Rinehart to attend a 2011 wedding in India (the people who are a bit strict might have a few questions about this) and then claimed more than $12,000 in taxpayer money to go back home, claiming that the various meetings and events they added to their itinerary made studies trips (to the extent they had to be entitled). (Malcolm Turnbull, who was questioned over the weekend, strongly supported Bishop’s series of engagements.)

Of course, doubtful claims do not only fall in one direction. Julia Gillard paid back money while she was deputy opposition leader over Tim’s use of her car for a reason that was not permitted by the rules. When Gillard (as the PM) took a flight to go to her daughter’s wedding in Byron Bay, the wedding of one of her press secretaries, the media raised questions about her entitlement. Her office confirmed that she had other commitments within the region.

Abbott claimed that his Finance department, which administers the rules, had told him that it wasn’t clear if the wedding claims he made were legal in the context of the rules.

A former Liberal Minister, Peter Reith, made a big leap when he stated on ABC: “you are always ministers. It’s the norm for a politician. If you are invited to attend an event that is private, your decision as a minister will be, does this really matter from a political standpoint? This is why it’s politically im to get to get to know people on a personal and intima, which basis is an important aspect of your work as a politician.”

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