Barilaro elected new Nationals leader unoppossed

MONARO MP John Barilaro has been elected as the new NSW Nationals leader unopposed at a party room meeting on Tuesday morning.

It follows the resignation of former leader Troy Grant and deputy leader Adrian Piccoli after the poor by-election result for the Nationals at Orange, believed to have been caused by the government’s controversial greyhound racing ban and council amalgamations.

The Nationals have held the seat since 1947 and by a margin of more than 21 per cent at the last state election, but, with some electorate’s experiencing swings of up to 60 per cent, the party is expected to lose the seat to Phil Donato from the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party.

Australian Racing Greyhound spoke to Donato on Monday and, while the result was still too close to call, the police prosecutor said the swing against the Nationals had sent a big message to the coalition government.

“Our party has been on the record from the very beginning sticking up for the greyhound industry and really working towards putting pressure on the government to overturn the ban,” Donato said.

“That was the reason why we initially decided to run for the seat of Orange and we wanted to send a strong message to the government.

“The result has sent massive shockwaves through the government already.

“You only have to see what has happened [on Monday] in relation to Troy Grant resigning – it has clearly sent a message to the government that the people of NSW and in particular from regional communities won’t be trodden on, spoken down to and treated this way.”

On Monday, Troy Grant spoke publicly for the first time in regards to his decision to step down as leader, labelling himself a team player.

“It’s certainly not what I wanted to do, but the circumstances are what they are,” Grant said.

“The community have a perception that we’re not listening to them. That’s not true, but that’s their perception and that’s the most important thing – what they believe and what they feel.

“We haven’t done a good enough job in communicating our message to them and telling them why we’re doing stuff and bringing them along with our decisions.

Barilaro, who takes over from Grant, will be joined by new Deputy Nationals Leader Niall Blair, who is also the minister for Primary Industries.

Barilaro has held the seat of Monaro since 2011 and claimed the seat with a narrow two per cent margin at the latest state election. He is already the Minister for Skills and the Minister for Small Business.

It is unclear at this stage what impact Barilaro’s leadership will have on the sport of greyhound racing, with the Greyhound Racing Prohibition Bill not set to be officially repealed until next year.

Barilaro had previously spoken out in support of the ban, notably on August 23 when the Greyhound Racing Prohibition Bill was passed by the Legislative Assembly.

“I supported the decision to end greyhound racing next year, but it was one of the toughest decisions I have made,” Barilaro said in Parliament at the time.

“It was a torturous decision that challenged one’s role in government and the legacy we leave for our communities.

“The decision is based on the need to stop animal cruelty and to assist society to change its attitude to animal welfare.

“This industry has had years to self-regulate. Live baiting has been banned for 60 years, yet there are examples of live baiting today.

“The community has been asked to trust that the industry can change. Reputable greyhound owners, breeders and trainers in the industry should be angry.

“They should be angry with those who have governed this industry and allowed it to deteriorate to this point.

“I spoke to a breeder in my community in Braidwood. I asked whether he believed the McHugh report had been exaggerated. He said he was angry with the Government’s decision but that the McHugh report is not exaggerated—if anything, it is probably the tip of the iceberg.

“Many within the industry have been aware of cruel live-baiting practices in the industry, but have sat idle and not voiced their concerns. Today the industry has to pay the ultimate price for that silence.”

Past Discussion

  1. Its laughable Barilaro or is it Balaclava , stated today WE MUST LISTEN TO THE PEOPLE , yeah! when this is the same bloke who supported the Ban on the Greyhounds ,they got a Flogging and Baird bunged on a Party for Liberals at Mr Wongs hate to see if they won the seat and the new Deputy  holds his seat by 2% The SF&F party might put a dent in his future  come 2019 !

  2. We have been very lucky to have won this round.  If Nationals MP Andrew Glee had not resigned to move on to federal politics and left the Orange seat vacant we would still be looking at closure in July 2017.

    We need something to bargain with for the next round. It’s coming.

  3. For starters we need Donato and the SF&F party to win the seat ,so they will continue to make sure that the reversal of the Greyhound ban is completed .

  4. think the real emphasis of energy,shoud now be concentrating on MIKE BAIRD.

    With JONES and HADLEY useful weapons,and some other media outlets,an all out attack and defaming of BAIRD on a constant level is warranted.

    drive the point,or his bad points home continually,highlighting,like he did with his dog cruelty advertising,his errors and his standover tactics right across the board.

    not only the dog issue or the council amalgamations,but all other sinister sell offs the jerk has created including his handling of ICAC.

    this is a grub and a corrupt politician. the worst the state has ever witnessed,but if the people do not attack him and rid of him,they will keep suffering even more,and he thinks he is untouchable and unreplaceable.

    people power won at ORANGE,so now we need to attack our local members and demand they sort BAIRD out,and create confusion and mistrust within BAIRDS own party.

    forget the McHugh report,and other legal cases,the only way to stop this dragging on is by attacking the jugular of MIKE BAIRD.he is unfit for the leadership,and we,yes all of us, need it be known he needs to shunted not sideways,but out the door and sent to NORTH KOREA.

  5. Barilaro’s appointment as leader has a bad smell about it.  The leader of any party comes from a safe seat but this bloke only has a 2% margin. Another sacrificial lamb me thinks.  Reeks of Baird manoeuvring.

    Time for Barnaby to step in.

  6. Lets be fair the Nats are desperate for Leadership, and missing Mike would not give a sh*t who’s there Leader as long as they do what he wants. ITS TIME the Nats went it alone and get back to caring for Regional NSW but i feel after Orange  that still won’t happen !

  7. BobWhitelaw The Nats won’t be able to go it alone for the rest of this term while they’re under the coalition contract. 

    Maybe the contract will be set aside after the next election 2019 (fat chance). It’s time the coalition self destructed, they’re doing ok so far.

  8. God help us, this Barilaro  has no idea at all he stated here that the Industry has had years to self regulate  and we should be angry  with those who governed our industry . Well Barilaro it was  the Government  that appointed those to govern our sport not the participants. ,Mr Barilaro there was a campaign in the mid nineties, a campaign for the industry to self govern even bumper stickers  where made supporting our case saying (SAVE OUR INDUSTRY GIVE US THE RIGHT TO VOTE ) yes Mr Balrilaro the government ignored  our plea ,instead they appointed their own CRONIES ,result they through the industry under the Bus  and now your trying to  justify your governments mismanagement  of the industry . Stop the B.S and repeal  the GREYHOUND PROHIBITION BILL “NOW’

  9. BobWhitelaw lone widow I agree Bob especially if Katrina Hodgkinson and Chris Gulaptis jumped ship to the SF&F party, if Phil Donato is smart he should start a scavenger hunt right now. There’s so much dissent at the moment nothings impossible. The world’s our oyster it’s up to us.

  10. lone widow  I quited that exact thought. a sideways shuffle.this is still not good for dog industry.

    attack head long into BAIRD. your only chance guys. BOB, he will get that seat.

  11. “I spoke to a breeder in my community in Braidwood. I asked whether he believed the McHugh report had been exaggerated. He said he was angry with the Government’s decision but that the McHugh report is not exaggerated—if anything, it is probably the tip of the iceberg.

    Well of course it is, and the fact that the industry so vehemently and aggressively attacked those who wanted to bring the information to light and make greyhound racing take responsibility for its actions shows how little the industry actually cares about the inherent cruelty at its heart and how viciously they will defend the exploitation of innocent living creatures for profit. Unfortunately, this time it worked and even though the industry will be under increased scrutiny, helpless greyhounds trapped on breeding farms and in racing kennels will continue to suffer though lives confinement, injury and unnecessary death.

    I am a Board member of Grey2K USA Worldwide, an organization that fights to save these marvelous creatures all over the globe. (you can learn more about us here: I have fostered and adopted rescued racing greyhounds since 1995. I cannot imagine abandoning any of them when they become injured, old or sick and yet this is routinely what happens to them at operating tracks.
    Fred Barton
    Board Member
    Grey2K USA Worldwide

  12. Is this the man who supported the greyhound ban and supported council amalgamations and even suggested the three national party members who did support their constituents should be punished? Another Grant only shorter and darker. These Nationals are slow learners.

  13. On Alan Jones’s radio this morning, there are moves afoot to close the Thirlmere trial track by GRNSW.

    As A Jones says they’re attempting to close the industry via the back door.

  14. tell you one a Mexican and having no insight into past histrionics within the state and how dog racing went,but crikey,how many groups have been involved in trying to ‘run’ the industry?seriously people,its a mess up there.

    LONE WIDOW….you typed exactly what I was about to chat about. the appearance of an attack on trial tracks

    I have no doubt that there are moves afoot to shut down all trial tracks,as the Government and their attachments,the RSPCA,are in agreeance that it is there that major percentage of live baiting existed. a breeding ground one could say. so now we see attacks on these traks,but seriously,should one be surprised by this movement at all? me, I say no. I see the removal of these facilities as a step in the right direction,as the whispers are,some race tracks marked for race closure,will be utilized for trialing and GAP facilities,under the watchful eye of GRNSW.

    can that be a bad thing? maybe for the proprieter,but its a control and observe situation that I favour.

    I don’t agree with Alan Jones on this one,and I am a huge supporter of his.

    we have to start somewhere,and the way things are moving, I see this as a step needed to be taken by THE PANEL to protect our image.look at it closely,and you will see the reasoning. now,one needs to be careful,as to much UPROAR may show that we are not prepared to REFORM,and BAIRD is quoted as saying the decision to REPEAL will be based on what the PANEL REPORTS back. so tread carefully.

    stlll also stand by my statement that cut the head off the problem(Baird) and the body collapses.

  15. 38 minutes ago evesmith likes this Quote

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    Post by mossvegas on 38 minutes agoFurther good news, reshuffle of Ministries delayed till new year as Baird WILL resign mid Dec

    Read more:

    those who know who Mossvegas is,willbe very delighted with that remark. he is ususally spot on with his inside info. a man who moves with the right people.

    this maybe big news.who swung the sword towards Bairds head as I suggested?????

  16. spyman I am not surprised at all by Bairds tactic of attempting to close trial tracks, it’s the same as opening a flour mill but closing all the bakeries. A back door approach to closing the industry.

    I know it’s been said before, it’s up to the police to oversee the live baiting issue.

    I agree cut off the snakes head and the body dies. There are a few lefties need lopping as well.

  17. lone widow spyman  I recall hearing Baird say he wants zero to do with controlling/running the industry. if that is true,then step back and allow those paid to do that,do their jobs.i would find more satisfaction in repairing the industry than shutting it down,but this fella doesn’t know what he wants.

    the statement above concerning a forum writers comments at BAIRD going by mid-December,would be the greatest news for all concerned,not just the greys industry.

    and those pigs in the background,his so called advisers,need deportation back to Ernie who is waiting for his lying buddies to return to Canada.(tongue in cheek)

    Baird is a worried man. his children warm him and he sees them as more important. he maybe seeing that its them and a family life,or face all this anti stuff.his KINGS COLLEGE education never prepared him for this.

    step down now MIKE,and enjoy XMAS. we sure would.

  18. lone widow spyman  We have a trial track where I live and the man that runs it NEVER has or will have anything to do with live baiting. I send my dogs there to be broken in because he does a brilliant job for a reasonable price a far better job than I could do and it costs considerable less than if I had to do it.  He treats the dogs extremely well and anyone who works for him knows you so much as lay a hand on a dog you will be sacked on the spot. He is also a highly intelligent and a good bloke with a wealth of knowledge. He has also invested everything he has in this business and is of the age that if his trial track closes he would not be able to find other work. He also spends a lot of money with regards meat and bedding etc and employs two young blokes and in a country town this is a good thing. A couple of the young blokes he employed have gone on to become stewards and are doing well.  The costs of maintenance also provides work. Nothing good would come from closing this track.

    There are laws with regards animal cruelty enforced by the Police and the courts. The RSPCA need to take a more active role in this as well. Their  only contribution during the debate was to show a couple of graphic pictures that they had done nothing about. The cattle prod incident was reported by several trainers and NOTHING was done until they could use it for their political advantage. The RSPCA is supposedly a non profit organisation and does not have to pay tax yet has millions in investments while dogs are kept for a week sometimes three to a kennel and then killed. Not good enough. There should be very little profit if they were doing the right thing. Making donations to political candidates with extreme activist views is also a disgrace and they wonder why people have become reluctant to donate.

    The huge backlash against the Nationals was not just about greyhounds the ramifications of this ban would impact on every aspect of country life- cattle farming, pony club, camp drafting etc etc etc- people in the country saw it as a win for animal activism and once they had picked off what they thought was the easy target these fanatics would move on. I think if it was only about greyhounds we would not have received the support we did.