Australian Politics: Labor’s weaponising of abuse claims comes home to roost

Australian Politics: Labor’s weaponising of abuse claims comes home to roost. By The Mocker.

If we are to understand Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese correctly, it is never an appropriate time to ask him to respond to reports that his Senate leadership team ostracised, marginalised, and bullied Labor senator Kimberley Kitching, 52, over a prolonged period that ended with her death this month from a suspected heart attack. …

This was the same Albanese who in March last year declared himself a champion of women’s safety while lambasting the Morrison government for its failings in that respect. “Women need to feel safe in every workplace and, indeed, every part of society,” he said at a doorstop conference. “And what we need to do is to make sure we listen to those concerns and respond.”

Great news: Albanese has finally responded. Although he will not initiate an investigation, he has announced he will lobby ALP National Secretary Paul Erickson to have the National Executive institute a ‘Kimberley Kitching Human Rights Award’. How good is that? The only way he could be any more feckless and maladroit would be if he asked one of the alleged perpetrators to present it. …

Having spent the last few years weaponising abuse allegations against their political opponents, senior Labor Party figures have discovered to their dismay it is being used against them — and on the eve of an election. …

Politicians say some hypocritical things to try to gain power:

So where does Tanya Plibersek — the shadow minister for women — stand on this? “I just don’t want to keep raking over this terrible loss and treating like it’s a political issue to manage,” she told Sky News last week. …

If hypocrisy were a portfolio, Plibersek would be a worthy holder. This was her in 2018 castigating the Coalition: “To have respected women on the opposite side talking about a toxic culture of bullying, and then having the now Prime Minister dismiss that and refuse to take it seriously, refuse to investigate, shows just how unfit this mob opposite is to govern.”

By her own words, she has tacitly admitted her party is unfit to hold office.

And more:

Wong, Keneally, and Gallagher have denied the allegations of bullying Kitching. … No doubt they would correctly say in response they are entitled to the presumption of innocence.

But compare that to what each of them said last year concerning former attorney-general Christian Porter, when it was revealed a woman, now dead, had accused him of raping her in 1988 when he was 17. He has steadfastly denied that allegation.

Wong: “The reality is unless there is some form of investigation, some form of process that gives Australians confidence in the first law officer, these questions will continue. It is a matter for the Prime Minister. He is responsible for the membership of the Cabinet, and he is responsible for all of us, for ensuring Australians that everyone in that Cabinet is a fit and proper person for the office they hold.”

Polls have Labor about 10 points ahead, with a federal election in about two months. Even given the silent conservative factor (worth maybe 2% at the last election), it’s hard to see Labor losing at this stage.