Well, that didn't take long. Health Minister Sussan Ley has stood aide from her role without pay after she claimed taxpayer money on a trip to the Gold Coast, on which she purchased a $795K investment property. You know, as you do. Pressure had been mounting as News Corp papers revealed it was only one example of potentially questionable trips Ms Ley had taken on the taxpayer's dime.

Ley is standing aside for the duration of the investigation, but said that her decision to pre-emptively pay back some of the costs related to the trip was "not an admission that [she had] broken the rules”.

In a statement, Malcolm Turnbull confirmed that Ley had agreed to stand aside without ministerial pay.This follows Ley's statement yesterday, in which she apologised and promised to subject her claims to more scrutiny, but would not accept that she had acted improperly – at least as far as the rules were concerned:

It’s not an admission that I’ve broken the rules and I’m very confident that the investigations will demonstrate that no rules were broken whatsoever. But I also recognise the pub test and that for people who live in my electorate, who work hard, this has a look that I don’t understand those issues and in fact the opposite is the case. 

In hindsight, the character of my visit to the Gold Coast changed the moment I unexpectedly was the successful bidder at that auction.

Whether it passes the fabled sniff test is another question entirely (hint: it does not). She followed with a press conference saying that it is "not always appropriate" for ministers to release their diaries. Mmm.

We'll keep you posted on this. For now, Arthur Sinodinos fills the role. He, in case you forgot, has also been embroiled in corruption allegations, after he claimed to have no idea of a $74,000 donation by a company he was deputy chairman of, to the NSW Liberal Party – while he was treasurer.

Fun, fun times.

Source: Twitter / Sky News.
Photo: Getty Images.

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