The next week, Whitlam fired Cairns for misleading Parliament regarding the Loans Affair amid innuendo about his relationship with his Principal Private Secretary, Junie Morosi . He was replaced as deputy by Frank Crean .  At the time of Cairns' dismissal, one Senate seat was vacant, following the death on 30 June of Queensland ALP Senator Bertie Milliner . The state Labor party nominated Mal Colston , who was the highest unelected candidate on the party's Queensland list in 1974. This resulted in deadlock in Brisbane; the unicameral Queensland legislature twice voted against Colston, and the party refused to submit any alternative candidates.  Queensland Country Party Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen had evidence that Colston, a schoolteacher by trade, had set a school on fire during a labour dispute, though the police had refused to prosecute.  After the legislature voted Colston down a second time, Bjelke-Petersen instructed his majority in the legislature to elect a low-level union official, Albert Field , who had contacted his office and expressed a willingness to serve. In interviews, Field made it clear he would not support Whitlam. Field was expelled from the ALP for standing against Colston, and Labor senators boycotted his swearing-in.  Whitlam argued that because of the vacancies being filled as they were, the Senate was "corrupted" and "tainted", with the Opposition enjoying a majority they did not win at the ballot box.  When Labor learned that Field had not given the required three weeks' notice to the Queensland Department of Education, it challenged his appointment in the High Court, arguing that he was still technically a public servant–and thus ineligible to serve in the Senate. With Field on leave throughout the remainder of the crisis, the Coalition refused to provide a " pair " to account for his absence, giving it an effective majority of 30–29 in the Senate.