A difference of opinion last night about whether Barnaby Joyce was a "bottom pincher." First up this story in the Sydney Daily Telegraph:
MALCOLM Turnbull’s top adviser was warned about the drunken public behaviour of Barnaby Joyce two years ago after a woman claimed the Deputy PM pinched her on the bottom following an official function. The Daily Telegraph can reveal Mr Turnbull’s closest adviser, Sally Cray, looked into allegations in 2015 but didn’t take it any further.And then the denial as reported by Nine News:
Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce has denied he drunkenly pinched a woman's bottom after the accusation was made public seven years after it is alleged to have occurred. The Daily Telegraph reports that the woman claims Mr Joyce was "very, very drunk" when he pinched her after she confronted him about concerns about his interaction with another woman at an event following the Rural Women's Agricultural Awards in Canberra in 2011. ... The newspaper and Fairfax Media both quote text messages sent to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's senior adviser Sally Cray in 2015 in which she was warned of Mr Joyce's behaviour four years earlier.
The text messages were from John Clements, a former chief advisor to Mr Joyce's political nemesis Tony Windsor. The conversation in text messages reportedly includes Ms Cray saying "it's hard if there was not an official complaint at the time to act".
A spokesman for Mr Joyce has denied the incident and said the minister did not attend a pub or nightclub — where it is alleged to have occurred — after the awards.
The spokesman said the fact the allegations came from a long-time political rival should give people pause for thought.