Joyce and Campion together at airport
AFTER surviving his first week as a backbencher, it was with some relief that Barnaby Joyce and his partner, and former media adviser, Vikki Campion escaped Canberra yesterday.
The heavily-pregnant Ms Campion and Mr Joyce, wearing his trademark Akubra and an open-neck shirt, attracted attention of onlookers as they made their way to the Qantas Chairman's Lounge at Canberra airport.
The flight to Sydney was the first time the couple had been seen together since news broke they were expecting a baby in April - the fifth child and first son for Mr Joyce.
It has been a tumultuous month for the new couple, with news of their relationship splashed across front pages around the country and sparking a feud with Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, who responded with a ban on sexual relations between ministers and their staff.
Mr Joyce stood down this week as deputy prime minister, making way for new face, former veterans affairs minister, Michael McCormack.
There is some discontent within the Nationals after Mr McCormack elevated his political allies Keith Pitt, Darren Chester and Mark Coulton into the Turnbull Government ministry, demoting Luke Hartsuyker and Damian Drum, who gave Ms Campion a job.
But his changes were minimal, with Mr McCormack keeping all of Mr Joyce's backers inside Cabinet.