NOT UP TO IT: "Save us from Davis" cry frustrated Victorian Liberals

daviddavispix Victorian Liberal upper house leader David Davis is under pressure to resign today following an embarrassing breach of legal obligations to disclose all of his financial interests.

The Herald Sun’s gun reporter Padraic Murphy revealed today that David Davis had neglected to disclose a shareholding in the Commonwealth Bank, which has extensive dealings with the Victorian government. Some thought claims that Ted Baillieu was linked to tax havens were a bit of a stretch but he’s certainly onto something with Davis.

VEXNEWS has learned that Davis owns 1200 shares in the Bank, which have traded as high as $60 a share this year and are currently worth around $51 each, making his investment worth $61,200. It’s a large amount of money to have forgotten about.

Indeed, the Commonwealth Bank pays a twice-yearly dividend as well, meaning that Davis has collected thousands of dollars of dividends from the bank since neglecting to disclose his shareholding.

While VEXNEWS is not a vehicle for idle speculation, we can only hope Mr Davis did not forget to disclose his income from the Commonwealth Bank to the Australian Tax Office, as required by law.

Davis is not a wealthy man and Liberal insiders tell VEXNEWS while there wouldn’t have been any malicious intent involved that it did make colleagues wonder whether he had an ‘eye for detail’ that would be required as the third most senior minister in a Liberal government.

“As the Minister for Health he’d be responsible for the expenditure of many billions of dollars a year, so it’s not a good look,” a Davis critic explained.

Internal Liberal critics – who have been keeping their head down to avoid blame for undermining the federal or state campaigns – have worried that Davis doesn’t have the judgment to hold down high office either, demonstrated by walking into a $200,000 defamation trap set by shrewd Labor strategist Stephen Newnham and what some say is excessive drinking in Parliament House, particularly in the evening.

While the lad himself talks it down, many see highly effective Liberal planning spokesman Matthew Guy as a far better prospect to step up in the upper house leadership role.

With the federal election going down to the wire, after a compelling Tony Abbott showing at the Rooty Hill RSL debate last night, Victorian state politics is slowing entering its own election phase. David Davis is certainly loyal to Ted Baillieu factionally, which is why Baillieu keeps him there. But with an election win a distinct possibility for the Victorian Liberals, many are wondering whether they can afford a big-drinking, complacent and sloppy upper house leader letting the side down when there’s a younger, sharper and hungrier alternative ready to make his move.

He might now have the biggest chance he’s going to get.

UPDATE: Davis’s stupidity and neglect have only served to draw more attention to Ted Baillieu’s issue about disclosure of his own investments. He was mercilessly lampooned in Parliament yesterday for buying CSL shares at the time of the swine flu epidemic, suggesting he might have been cashing in on the misery of others and has been avoiding the press as well hoping no-one will notice their self-imposed goals. Many Liberals wonder why someone who is in a good position to win has consistently undermined his own reputation by not creating a blind trust or similar arrangement that would make this issue go away. Apparently only one brave soul in the party room has been willing to raise this as a concern. The reaction from the Leader’s office did not encourage them to make further representations, we hear.

UPDATE: Recent revelations by VEXNEWS and the Sunday Herald Sun that Davis planned to hit up his parliamentary colleagues for his $200,000 defamation bill have caused several Liberals this afternoon to question whether they should have been forced to pay for his expensive mistake, particularly in circumstances where he’s got a lazy $60,000 lying around in the form of forgotten Commonwealth Bank shares he originally bought for a song, back in 1991.



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29 responses to “NOT UP TO IT: "Save us from Davis" cry frustrated Victorian Liberals

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention VEXNEWS 2010© | NOT UP TO IT: “Save us from Davis” cry frustrated Victorian Liberals --

  2. Ka-ching

    Is it any surprise that he’s hiding these shares given his recent defo settlement? I think his party colleagues who are being forced to cough up to meet his costs would be fascinated to know taht he has $60k in CommBank shares secretly squirreled away.

  3. Child Maintenance

    Is he also hiding them because he is in arrears on his child maintenance payments in repsect of his oldest child – the one not from his marriage?

  4. Just Sayin

    This is not the first time D2 has failed to meet his financial obligations. When it comes to child maintenance I think you will find he’s myles behind.

  5. Dear Liberals - can we now have some disclosure?

    It would be good to get some real disclosure on all liberals involved in policy formulation and state and federal pre-selection and their links to the now discredited international education industry?

    a flow diagram of the liberal party member factional warlords and business connections to some of the following colleges might help both a future state corruption commission and the Australian tax office better understand how this Howard inspired industry contributed to the economy and the political culture of Victoria.

    A big question being asked about this self regulated and now largely defunct billion dollar industry is how much of those billions was sent offshore?

    AITE – Australian Institute of Technology & Education
    ANIBT – Australian National Institute of Business and Technology
    AOI – Australian Online Institute
    Carrick Institute
    Cambridge International College
    Central Queensland University
    iAscend Tafe Australia
    ITHEA – Institute of Tertiary & Higher Education Australia
    Melbourne Institute of Technology
    Menzies Institute of Technology
    Pearson Aviation
    Stott’s Colleges

  6. Vasan fan club




  7. Giuseppe De Simone

    Parliamentary disclosure laws are a socialist nirvana driven by autocratic bureaucracies. The laws discourage successful professionals, entrepreneurs and business people. These rules are inspired by envy. Every Australian and every politician has exposure to Commonwealth Bank through superannuation – if not their own, one of their family members. It is a joke. At the parliamentary legislative level, the traditional concept of pecuniary conflict of interest is fatuous and dangerous. If a politician does not have a “conflict” one way or another in
    relation to any of the major top 20 national corporations, then they aren’t interested in the economic well-being of Australia as each of these organisations – large banks, miners, retailers, property developers, media companies etc – impacts the lives of every Australian. Laws about taxation, employment, regulation, economic stimulus etc change the business investment decisions of these major players on a constant basis.


    On a separate matter, David Davis is the ideal upper house leader under Ted Baillieu as they share many common values and political allies. David is nearly as close to Ted as Mark Birrell was to Jeff. Mark is the man who convinced Jeff to stay leader when the Liberals were offered continued government in 1999 if they replaced Jeff with a leader who hadn’t offended the two genuine rural independents. I wonder what similarly sage advice David is giving Ted.

  8. Myles

    If his seat becomes available and you want someone with real talent I am free. Alex Hork will give me a good reference and you can rely on his promises.

  9. corr-uption

    whats new he Davis is so in very like company as some of those in the ALP ie Australias loose morals party that go so off the track so very often

  10. Choo Choo

    The GTM has no such problems.

  11. sandy

    Wish I had his problem – $60,000 worth of shares in the bottom drawer that I had forgotten about. Especially as they are paying good dividends.

  12. Dopey Dave Davis

    Doh I think I got it wrong again Teddy doh!!

  13. the ALP

    please dont replace Davis with Mat Guy

  14. Argus Tuft

    He has been far too busy trying to blame Steve Bracks for bank closures to remember what is in his own backyard. He is our biggest
    Richard Cranium of all time

  15. Anonymous

    Colin Brooks is not the next one to fall.

  16. Liberal morals

    The liberal way is to make buck as they denude the public.
    Eg close schools and hospitals then sell the land to liberal mates….

    Good to know the westminster system means nothing to these types… Democracy is to be tolerated only to the extent that it does nit interfere with a liberal mps to make a quick profit …. The 70s land deals are in the liberal dna. And who could forget the moonlighting mp and the real estate agent who know offer theselves up as servants of the state.

  17. Labor Morals

    The Labor Way to make a buck is to take taxpayer’s money and give it Labor mates to make TV ads.

  18. candid

    Just another nail in the coffin of the state of Victoria.
    The parliament has the power to alter the state constitution so that if an MP does not disclose full details of his/her financial assets then they go to gaol (jail)or be expelled from parliament.

    The ordinary people of Victoria are living in a camp controlled by a few pollies. Nothing has changed in 150 years. Sack them all.
    Give the people the right to decide what is in the victorian constitution.

  19. Teds trips to india

    Teds private meetings with the 70 visa factory international colleges are well known but less well known was his meetings organised by former college owner nitin Gupta with mining interests in India.

    What was the nature of those aleged meetings? Did Victorian taxpayers fund these trips?

    Is it true these meetings were about indian commercial interests buying into Australian mining sector?

    If yes then how does any of this benefit Victorian taxpayers?

    Liberal party member and failed candidate nitin Gupta had the good sense to sell his college just prior to the may 2009 student demo and the eventual collapse of this sector. As a close associate of ballieu did he recieve any special information when making this commercial decision. Specifically did he know that the liberal party planned to blow up this sector to harness a racial vote as early as may 2009?
    We need answers from ballieu on his indian connections- otherwise Davis will simply be replaced with a shady indian business stooge and public life in Victoria will sink further into decline. All the ballieu business links must be broken to protect the public interest. That cannot happen as long as ballieu hides behind secrecy.

  20. Liberals smears

    The liberal smears against the labor party are the same here as in the herald. Name the ad agency involved.
    Otherwise it is just a vague attack but another bored liberal staffer.

    Working for a part time opposition leader must be dull but just try to concentrate and put some details up on your slander.

  21. Liberal DNA

    Like many political backwaters the liberal addiction to shonky deals and money making scams. That is why the indian college owners love Ted and promised him $400k if he would preselect an indian for no 2 spot in upper nth metro. Liberal branch members were smarter. Time for media and public to say no to teds dodgy indian mates too.

  22. Burny

    Hows is it that Bernie Finns name has not mentioned as a potential leader of the upper house. its about time talent was rewarded.

  23. Syphologist - A Pox on Pollsters

    If talent was truly measured and rewarded, Bernie Finn would not be in Parliament. His presence is a blight on the Liberal Party and its preselection processes.

  24. Anonski

    Sypologst – is that you, D-Squared?

  25. Queen of Fables runs amok

    Queen of Fables does not like D- squared…

  26. cattle farmer

    I agree with ‘the ALP’. Don’t replace Davis with Guy. Davis may have problems but Guy is does not stick to his word or do what he promises. He may look good on the surface but he has no substance and little ability.





  28. Anon

    “Parliamentary disclosure laws are a socialist nirvana driven by autocratic bureaucracies. The laws discourage successful professionals, entrepreneurs and business people.”

    No. The laws are there to ensure there is no conflict of interest between the decisions a politician makes and their own business dealings.

    Only a far-right Rand-school idiot would think otherwise.

  29. Tell the truth,

    The only reason labor, and vex news, as well as the ABC attack Davis so much is because he is sooo effective.

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