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Peter Dutton, David Littleproud urge Barnaby Joyce to take time off work to deal with personal issues after video

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Coalition leaders Peter Dutton and David Littleproud are urging Barnaby Joyce to take leave to deal with personal issues nearly a week after he was filmed lying on a Canberra road after a long day of sitting in parliament.

The opposition leader and his Nationals counterpart spoke to the maverick MP in Canberra this week and suggested he take time off to sort himself out after a difficult period, according to two sources familiar with the talks. given anonymity to speak freely.

Barnaby Joyce in parliament on Tuesday.Credits: Alex Ellinghausen

The 56-year-old New England MP has not yet decided whether to take a break, as his critics within the Nationals rail against him about the damage his questionable behavior is doing to the Coalition as his supporters urge him to ally to stay.

Joyce’s colleagues identified another key factor – upsetting family news – that may have contributed to his actions last week, which he also blamed on mixing alcohol with prescription medication after attending two events shortly after the parliamentary sitting day.

His the mother-in-law said to Daily Mail that Joyce had “some very bad news in the family” on the day of the incident, explaining that Joyce had lost a brother to cancer and received similar news that affected him greatly. The masthead doesn’t know this is the kind of family news.

Joyce has spoken publicly about her mental health struggles in the past.

Joyce is Littleproud’s main challenger in a party that continues to be plagued by leadership tensions. Some of Littleproud’s supporters have gone to the party leader to use this opportunity to kick Joyce off the frontbench, but it is unclear whether Littleproud has the will or political authority to boot the party’s highest profile and say most energetic MP.

Joyce’s supporters are wary of any moves by Littleproud to take advantage of Joyce’s misadventures to boost his own political fortunes. They believed Joyce deserved sympathy, was treated harshly by a bystander who filmed her instead of helping her, and should not be politically punished for misbehavior in her personal life.

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