THE political commentary following Port Macquarie MP Leslie Williams' snap resignation from the Nationals at the weekend has come thick and fast.
But the move has made one thing very clear as Mrs Williams prepares to join the ranks of the Liberal Party and continue her support for a Coalition Government - she has no time for disrespect.
Her resignation was made public on September 20 following a torrid fortnight for the Nationals and its leader John Barilaro.
The Deputy Premier, in a rogue move, said his MPs would abstain from voting on coalition bills and would be "effectively on the cross bench" while they fought changes to the Koala Habitat Protection State Environmental Planning Policy.
Mrs Williams, who has been with the party for 15 years, opposed Mr Barilaro's move, as well as a "threatening" letter he sent to Premier Gladys Berijiklian on the issue.
She described his behaviour as "politically reckless and unreasonable" and it achieved nothing other than to destablise the government.
While it appeared she was a lone ranger on the issue, Mrs Williams said there are party members who have since thanked her.
"All the decisions I've ever made, all of the actions I've ever taken are all on the premise they are in the best interests of my community," Mrs Williams said.
"At the end of the day, we are a Coalition. I was elected as a member of a Liberal-Nationals government.
"I just think the actions of last week were really reckless. I think it was so inappropriate. We are in the middle of a health pandemic and the Premier of this state has absolutely put us up as the gold example of how we should be managing it. And that's on top of what she did in the bushfires - why would you put that in jeopardy?
"I think it's just so disrespectful to treat the Premier in that way."
Mrs Williams said she has heard from a number of her National party colleagues and spoken with acting Deputy Premier Paul O'Toole. She said some are understanding of her position, are aware of what has been happening publicly and behind closed doors and respect her decision.
"I never got into politics to play the game. I wanted good things for my community and as a government we've delivered exceptional investment into this area," she said.
"For my community nothing really changes, we're still in the same government. I still have a seat at the table and will keep fighting for what my community deserves."
Mr Barilaro is now on extended mental health leave. Mrs Williams said she supports his decision.
Mrs Williams has spoken with the Premier who has backed her decision to join the Liberals.
"She has welcomed me to the Liberal Party and I look forward to working with her and all of my other Liberal colleagues as I have always done. I have a good relationship with them and that's why I wasn't prepared to jeopardise that with the actions (the Nationals) chose to take in the last couple of weeks.
"When people elect you to parliament they elect you based on the premise you are going to fight for what they need in their community.
"What they also expect is that you act like a professional. You are a statesmen and they expect you to have characteristics that are aligned with that - professionalism, integrity and respect for other people.
"That's why I couldn't stay aligned to a party that is not prepared to respect other people's views. All of my colleagues stood behind him.
"To have this kind of reckless behaviour condoned is really disturbing. Communities expect better of their representation - my community expects that of me."
Mrs Williams said when she came into politics in 2011, she was mentored by the likes of Jenny Gardner, Duncan Gay and Don Page.
"They were real statesmen they taught me and mentored me and showed me how you should behave as a politician - that this is what people expect of you," Mrs Williams said.
"It worries me we don't have those real statesmen around the table anymore."
Mrs Williams said her move is not likely to change the political landscape in Port Macquarie and on the Mid North Coast.
"For some people it will make a difference and I totally respect that. But it has been a Liberal-Nationals government that has delivered for them over the last nine and a half years," she said.
"People in the community know why I am here."
Becoming an independent was not an option, she said.
Her electorate sits in Nationals heartland. The seat has been held by the Nationals for all but six years since 1945.
"What is the point of being outside of the room when discussions are being had," she said.
The key issues for Port Macquarie remain the same - deliver on election promises including the Ocean Drive duplication, delivering a new police station and major upgrades at Hastings Secondary College with a PCYC.
Mrs Williams, a former nurse, was elected to the seat in 2011 after her third attempt. She became involved in politics in a bid to have a school built at Lake Cathie. That goal was achieved in 2014.
She has served in a variety of portfolios during her time including as Minister for Early Childhood Education, Minister for Aboriginal Affairs and Assistant Minister for Education.
She also held the role of Parliamentary Secretary for Renewable Energy and Parliamentary Secretary for Regional and Rural Health.
Mrs Williams is the Deputy Speaker of the Legislative Assembly.
The Port Macquarie electorate includes Harrington, Crowdy Head, Coopernook, Lansdowne Upper Lansdowne, Moorland, Killabakh, Langley Vale, Johns River and Stewarts River on the Mid Coast.
What else is making news?
Thank you for valuing local journalism with your subscription. While you're with us, you can also receive updates straight to your inbox from the Manning River Times. To make sure you're up to date with all the news, sign up here.