Hats in the Ring

"Can't guarantee anything," Federal Secretary pointed out.

"I know you can't. So I won't be on actual tenterhooks while I wait for the word."

That was just as well. These things take time, and Ballantyne was reasonably sure he knew what would be going on over the next couple of weeks.

Number One on the ticket came from Moran's faction, so no one else was going to wear Bugalugs' replacement coming from the same interests. 

Ballantyne had, however, been a member of the same branch, and didn't fit into any definable faction. 

If someone bothered to keep track of where he'd voted on issues where Moran said something was black, and his chief rivals argued that it was white, Ballantyne's vote tended to go with whatever tint of grey looked to be closest to the mark.

That meant that he had voted against things Moran was pushing often enough to be regarded as, effectively, neutral from any major player's point of view.

The other three, representing different interests, had combined official parliamentary business in Darwin that related to the harbour and defence facilities with a bit of factional negotiation. 

That was why George hadn't heard Ballantyne's name being thrown around yesterday.


© Ian Hughes 2017