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Australian politician who said gay marriage was wrong resigns after getting his mistress pregnant

Josh Jackman February 23, 2018
CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 16: Barnaby Joyce speaks to the press on February 16, 2018 in Canberra, Australia. Mr Joyce announced last week that he had separated from his wife and was expecting a child with his former media adviser Vikki Campion. Since then, speculation has mounted that the National Party leader may have to resign as Deputy Prime Minister. (Photo by Michael Masters/Getty Images)

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The Australian deputy prime minister, who opposed same-sex marriage because “every child has a right to know her or his mother and father,” has resigned after cheating on his wife.

Barnaby Joyce announced this morning that he will also step down from his position as leader of the National Party on Monday.

He left his wife, Natalie, after she discovered his affair with his media adviser Vikki Campion.

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 16: Barnaby Joyce speaks to the press on February 16, 2018 in Canberra, Australia. Mr Joyce announced last week that he had separated from his wife and was expecting a child with his former media adviser Vikki Campion. Since then, speculation has mounted that the National Party leader may have to resign as Deputy Prime Minister. (Photo by Michael Masters/Getty Images)
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Joyce and Campion are expecting a child in April.

The 50-year-old politician said he hoped his decision would help Natalie and their four daughters.

“This has got to stop,” he said, according to the BBC. “It’s not fair on them.”

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - MAY 11: Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce during House of Representatives question time at Parliament House on May 11, 2017 in Canberra, Australia. The Turnbull Goverment's second budget has delivered additional funds to education, a plan to assist first home buyers, along with a crackdown on welfare.
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He added: “This current cacophony of issues has to be put aside.”

Joyce has denied a sexual harassment complaint that was made against him by another woman.

He was a strong opponent of equal marriage during the country’s postal vote on the issue, which prompted its legalisation of same-sex marriage.

Rebecca Davies and her partner Paula Van Bruggen kiss as they celebrate in the crowd (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)
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During the voting period, Joyce claimed marriage existed as “a process that’s inherently there for the support of, or the prospect of, children”.

He added: “I think that every child has a right, absolute right to know her or his mother and father and also… should be given the greatest opportunity to know their biological mother and father.”

Joyce continued: “I don’t think if you go and pass a piece of legislation and say a diamond is a square, [it] makes diamonds squares – they’re two different things.”

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 14: Barnaby Joyce, the Deputy Prime Minister, during Question Time on February 14, 2018 in Canberra, Australia. Mr Joyce announced last week that he had separated from his wife and was expecting a child with his former media adviser Vikki Campion. Since then, speculation has mounted that the National Party leader may have to resign as Deputy Prime Minister. (Photo by Michael Masters/Getty Images)
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The politician has also claimed that marriage equality could harm Australia’s cattle trade, because people from other countries would see them as “decadent”.

Joyce has also previously justified his opposition to equal marriage by telling GQ: “On most streets of Australia, people do not give a s**t about it”.

CANBERRA, AUSTRALIA - FEBRUARY 14: The Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull during Question Time on February 14, 2018 in Canberra, Australia. Mr Joyce announced last week that he had separated from his wife and was expecting a child with his former media adviser Vikki Campion. Since then, speculation has mounted that the National Party leader may have to resign as Deputy Prime Minister. (Photo by Michael Masters/Getty Images)
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (Getty)

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull issued a statement saying: “I thank Barnaby for his service as deputy prime minister and in his various ministerial roles in which he has been a fierce advocate for rural and regional Australia.”

Last week, Turnbull publicly criticised his deputy PM for a “shocking error of judgement” and said that ministers would be prohibited from having sex with their staff.

More: Australia, Australia, Barnaby Joyce, malcolm turnbull, national party, Politics, same sex marriage

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