Katter's Australian Party could become Queensland kingmakers
AS Labor and the LNP scramble to get crossbenchers on side to ensure a majority in the house following Billy Gordon's resignation from the Labor Party, the two Katter MPs may once again hold the balance of power.
The two Katter's Australian Party MPs - Mt Isa MP Robbie Katter and Dalrymple MP Shane Knuth - issued their list of demands on Thursday that were focused on improving regional Queensland.
The MPs have not yet indicated which party they would support but Mr Katter said Mr Gordon, the member for Cook who resigned from the Labor party before the Premier officially sacked him, had the right to natural justice.
Mr Katter said Mr Gordon's resignation had shifted the balance of power back into their court.
"Be assured we will use this new shift to the advantage of the people we represent, who have been neglected for too long," he said.
Last month Mr Gordon's former partner sent emails to the Premier and other political identities that alleged Mr Gordon was involved in domestic violence, had not paid child support and had not lodged tax returns.
Mr Gordon also admitted on his Facebook page that he had a criminal history but the Parliamentary Clerk has since said because this occurred a long time ago, in the 1980s and 1990s, Mr Gordon was still able to act as an MP.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk referred the recent allegations on to police and called for Mr Gordon to resign his seat in Parliament.
Mr Katter said Mr Gordon had a right to natural justice.
"We'll be seeking to work with him on the crossbenches, as long as he remains there, simply to advance the cause of rural and regional Queensland," Mr Katter said.
Meanwhile Deputy Opposition Leader John-Paul Langbroek said cracks were starting to appear within the Labor Party following Deputy Premier Jackie Trad's comments that Mr Gordon was entitled to sit in Parliament even though the Premier had called for his resignation.
"The Labor Party don't know whether they are Arthur or Martha when it comes to this matter," he said. "Should Billy Gordon stay or should he go?"
Questions have also been raised of how the Queensland Parliament would operate with Mr Gordon's resignation from the Labor Party.
Labor now has 43 members and the LNP has 42. There are two Katter MPs, Mr Gordon and the independent and Speaker Peter Wellington, who has supported Labor forming government.
Treasurer Curtis Pitt said Mr Gordon would act as a crossbencher because the Cook MP was no longer a Labor Party member.
Because of this, Mr Pitt said the Labor Party and LNP would not know how Mr Gordon would vote leading up to the parliament sitting.
"I think it's important to note, particularly with the new voting system that is in Parliament, is Mr Gordon's vote and how he chose to vote on a particular issue would not be known until the end of that voting period," Mr Pitt said.
"Either way the Clerk has provided advice that if Mr Gordon stays in Parliament he has the right to vote and will continue to do so."