Colleagues offer support to Joyce after bizarre late-night video

Colleagues offer support to Joyce after bizarre late-night video

Opposition Leader Peter Dutton will grill Barnaby Joyce this week after the former deputy PM was filmed lying down on a Canberra street and swearing over the phone.

Joyce is not expected to attend a meeting of Nationals MPs this morning, where the matter is due to be discussed, The Age reported.

The ex-Nationals leader said he was suffering from a mixture of prescription medication and alcohol when he fell off a planter box in Lonsdale Street around 11.30pm last Wednesday.

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Speaking on breakfast television this morning, amid calls he should be dropped from the shadow frontbench, Joyce said he “made a big mistake” and that there was “no excuse for it”.

“I’m on a prescription drug, and they say certain things may happen to you if you drink, and they were absolutely 100 per cent right. They did.”

Joyce was spotted at two functions at Parliament House in the lead-up to the video, witnesses said.

He was on the phone with wife Vikki Campion and continued to speak with her while he lay on the footpath in his suit, white shirt and tie flopped up above his shoulder.

Speaking about the incident, Campion wondered why the person decided to film her husband rather than help him.

Nationals leader David Littleproud told Brisbane radio station 4BC Joyce would not be demoted over the incident and would be given the right kind of support.

“There’ll be further conversations with Barnaby to make sure we put the environment around him that he needs to make sure whatever challenges he’s got,” he said.

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Addressing the video last Friday, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said it was up to Joyce to “explain the circumstances” of the video.

“I have seen that footage … I think that’s a matter for him. I don’t intend to comment on what is clearly a difficult circumstance for Barnaby Joyce.”

In a statement, Joyce said he was swearing on the phone because he had hurt himself falling off one of the planter boxes on Lonsdale Street, which is lined with restaurants.

“If I’d known I was being filmed, probably would have got up quicker,” he said.

“I was walking back to my accommodation after parliament rose at 10pm.

“While on the phone I sat on the edge of a plant box, fell over, kept talking on the phone, and very animatedly was referring to myself for having fallen over.”

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