The Victorian government will not be beholden to independent balance-of-power MP Geoff Shaw, Premier Denis Napthine says.
Mr Shaw on Tuesday again sided with the Labor opposition to stall the government’s business agenda in the parliament, despite embattled Speaker Ken Smith resigning and Liberal Christine Fyffe being installed in his place.
Dr Napthine says Mr Shaw’s vote is a matter for him.
“That’s his decision. He’ll be judged by his decision,” he told reporters on Wednesday.
Dr Napthine says he will not lobby Mr Shaw to support the government business program in future.
“We are in charge of the legislative agenda,” he said.
“He’s an independent member of parliament and he makes his own decisions.
“We are not going to be beholden to Mr Shaw on any matters. We’ll get on with governing the state.”
Mr Smith said Mr Shaw calls the shots.
“As of yesterday, the stupid actions that he took, yes,” he said.
Deputy Liberal leader Louise Asher said when there was a bill that Labor was opposed to, it was Mr Shaw who decided whether it passed.
“He is calling the shots on legislation. He is not calling the shots in government,” she said.
Mr Smith has blamed Mr Shaw for his departure, telling parliament he would not be bullied into making any deals with him.
The Frankston MP’s announcement that he no longer had confidence in the Speaker was the catalyst for chaotic scenes in parliament in November.
Mr Smith believed the independent MP stopped supporting him after he refused a number of outrageous demands put to him by Mr Shaw that went against policy and regulation.
Dr Napthine says he is not aware of discussions between Mr Shaw and Mr Smith in recent months.
Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews said Mr Smith needs to detail the outrageous claims he says Mr Shaw made of him.
“If they are outrageous and inappropriate, then surely Ken Smith should detail for all Victorians exactly what Mr Shaw asked for,” Mr Andrews said.
It has been reported Mr Shaw demanded the Speaker provide him with a chauffeur-driven car.
Ms Fyffe said Mr Shaw is not entitled to a chauffeur-driven car and has not asked for one.