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Nationals Senator Bridget McKenzie is visiting flood-affected areas in New South Wales today but her interview with ABC News Breakfast has turned pretty quickly to discussing Andrew Lamming as well.
She says she has encouraged one of the young woman allegedly harassed by Lamming to take the matter further, but would not call on Lamming to resign from his elected position immediately:
Speaking about respect for women – a Liberal MP from Queensland, Andrew Laming, has been accused of taking a photograph of a young woman while she was bending over and her underwear was exposed. What’s your view on that in terms of showing respect for women?
Well, it’s unacceptable.
Should he stay in Parliament?
I think that Dr Laming has made the right decision. You know, he was elected by the people of Bowman but made the right decision not to contest the next election. And that is unacceptable.
It’s not just unacceptable – it’s illegal…
So why is he staying?
It is illegal and I’d encourage the young woman to take that further.
At the end of the day, he’s made the right call. It is absolutely unacceptable behaviour and those of us who were elected to Parliament for the great privilege to represent our communities need to take that very, very seriously and be exemplars…
One of the things I’ve been concerned about in the wake of the last six weeks is the lack of a bipartisan approach to this, because at the end of the day, if we don’t all come together to deal with this, it will be the women, not just in Parliament House, but in our broader society, that actually miss out on this being the reform opportunity that we all need to see.
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has been grilled over the government’s decision to allow Andrew Laming to stay in parliament until the next election this morning after appearing on ABC News Breakfast.
Laming has taken leave after a series of allegations about his behaviour towards women and said he won’t recontest the next election, but this means he could still remain in parliament for a year.
Do you believe Andrew Laming is a fit and proper person to serve in parliament, a fit and proper person to give you his vote until the next election?
Well, Andrew Laming’s behaviour is completely unacceptable. It’s demeaning of women and it certainly [is] not becoming of a member of parliament let alone anybody across our society at large. Yes, he’s apologised for his behaviour, yes he’s going through counselling and other education processes to correct his behaviour, and, yes, he’s announced he will not contest the next election, so really the onus is on Andrew.
Is he a fit and proper person in your view? You’re the deputy leader of the Labor party, to stay?
He should stay in parliament as I said yesterday but I also believe he should correct his behaviour and he was elected by his constituents to serve out of his term, he has a responsibility to deliver for them a better government and Australia coming through this pandemic, that’s what the Coalition is determined to do as we continue to role out the economic support measures we have just been talking about.
Importantly though the onus is on him to show that he has understood the errors of his ways, he has understood the gravity of his behaviour and that he has understood the need to ensure that he improves.
Scott Morrison’s approval rating takes a dive
Scott Morrison’s approval rating has dropped seven percentage points to 55% in the past fortnight, according to a Newspoll published by ihe Australian on Monday.
Polling was conducted between Wednesday and Saturday and provides information on an extremely contentious two-week period for the Coalition government, where they faced pressure over the handling of rape allegations and the national March 4 Justice protests.
It’s the first time since March 2020 that Morrison’s rating has dropped below 60%.
The survey of 1,517 voters showed Labor with 52% of two-party-preferred votes, leaving the Coalition with 48%, which is unchanged from earlier in March.
Morrison leads the “better prime minister” stakes 52% to 32% for opposition leader Anthony Albanese, with 16% of respondents uncommitted.
Covid-positive Brisbane man speaks out about false house party claims
The Covid-19 positive man falsely accused by health authorities of hosting a party with 25 people while awaiting test results has spoken out.
Lachlan Simpson told Nine News he believed authorities had got their dates confused with a gathering he held two weeks ago.
My heart’s been racing for the last 24 hours … I didn’t have a party with 25 people …
I told them that I had a gathering two weeks prior to me getting tested and somehow they’ve taken that day and moved it forward to Friday.
We went on a pub crawl the next day [after the gathering] but I think at that point I had no symptoms at all.
On Sunday, health authorities confirmed that while five people were at the man’s home one night while he was isolating. Four actually lived at the residence and there was no party.
Yesterday police confirmed in a statement they would not take further action:
Police conducted inquiries into the allegations but are satisfied the occupants of the house did not breach the health directions, and people from outside the residence were not involved …
Police investigators have not found any evidence to warrant action being taken against a man following reports of a house party involving people in quarantine at Strathpine.”
Welcome to Monday
Good morning, Matilda Boseley here to kick off the week and take you through all the news of Monday.
There has been yet another sexual harassment complaint in federal parliament this morning, with Nationals MP, Anne Webster lodging a complaint against someone else who works in the building after she was allegedly harassed last week.
She says she does not want to go into details but lodged her complaint directly with the Nationals leader, Michael McCormack. Webster spoke with ABC radio this morning:
First thought was, “You got to be kidding me. I mean, really?” I was just dumbfounded that this behaviour, because it wasn’t the first time and so for me, it was, like, “No, I have to actually address this”, and I have since spoken to the person and he assures me it won’t happen again.
In Queensland, health authorities have been forced to backtrack after incorrectly accusing an infected man of throwing a large party on the after being asked to isolate.
Brisbane man will not face police action after he was cleared of wrongdoing by police later Sunday afternoon.
The health minister, Yvette D’Ath, yesterday said Queensland Health received the incorrect information from the man himself.
We were told at the time there were 25 people that attended the residence …
It is extremely unfortunate that what has been discovered over the last 24 hours, that it wasn’t 25 people, but as I understand it this is the information that was received from this gentleman himself …
Whether the health officials misunderstood what he said, I wasn’t there, I didn’t hear the conversation, but this is the information that they believe that he had provided them at the time.
Further investigations by police and health authorities suggest the people who attended were limited to the man’s four housemates and one other person.
The Strathpine man in his 20s tested positive on Friday after contracting the UK strain of Covid-19 from a male friend in Stafford.
Health authorities were struggling to find a source for this new outbreak but a historical case reported on Sunday is believed to be the “missing link” connecting this small cluster to a doctor who tested positive earlier this month.
The Strathpine man and his Stafford friend are being treated in the hospital while further testing is conducted.
With that, why don’t we get cracking with the day.
If there is something you reckon I’ve missed or think should be in the blog but isn’t, shoot me a message on Twitter @MatildaBoseley or email me at email@example.com.
Source: The Guardian
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