Turnbull's right wing calling shots on 18C again

Reports this morning of a renewed push by ring-wing coalition senators to destroy protections against racial hate speech confirms once again just how weak and divided this government is.

THE HON TONY BURKE MP

SHADOW MINISTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT AND WATER

SHADOW MINISTER FOR CITIZENSHIP AND MULTICULTURAL AUSTRALIA

SHADOW MINISTER FOR THE ARTS

MEMBER FOR WATSON


THE HON MARK DREYFUS QC MP

SHADOW ATTORNEY-GENERAL
SHADOW MINISTER FOR NATIONAL SECURITY
MEMBER FOR ISAACS

TURNBULL’S RIGHT WING CALLING SHOTS ON 18C AGAIN

Reports this morning of a renewed push by ring-wing coalition senators to destroy protections against racial hate speech confirms once again just how weak and divided this government is.

Three years after the last ideological vendetta against Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act failed, fringe elements in the Turnbull government are gearing up to try again.

It is a mark of just how vulnerable Mr Turnbull’s leadership is, after the defection of Cory Bernardi, that these MPs sense their chance to drive their agenda once more.

Australians could be forgiven for thinking the Liberal party is stuck in a time warp – we may have a new Prime Minister, but the old campaigns against clean energy and 18C are back.

It is unthinkable that, after hearing overwhelming evidence in favour of Section 18C staying intact, coalition MPs on the Human Rights Committee should plough ahead anyway.

It shows just how backward their priorities as a government are. They are not focused on jobs or economic growth, but bizarre ideological fights.

It tore them apart last time, and it is likely to do so again.

We are still yet to hear from this government – what form of racial hate speech do they want to be able to use which they currently cannot?

Australians support section 18C, and Labor knows it. We pledge to stand with Australia’s ethnic minorities in the fight to protect section 18C.

Protections against racial hate speech are an important part of multicultural Australia, and too important to lose.

MONDAY, 13 FEBRUARY 2017