Anthony Albanese is too gutless to risk Labor’s electorates in western Sydney by introducing his amendments to the religious discrimination bill in the House of Representatives.
One Nation leader Senator Pauline Hanson said the Labor leader’s small target strategy wouldn’t wash on religious discrimination.
“I challenge Anthony Albanese to have the courage of his convictions and move Labor’s amendments in the lower house instead of relying on the Senate to do the dirty work for him,” Senator Hanson said.
“I challenge him to be honest with the Labor-held electorates in western Sydney with significant majorities of people with faith. State your position, stick by it, and accept the verdict of the voters at the next election.”
Senator Hanson said Labor MPs were coming under increasing pressure from religious groups not to water down protections or face an election bloodbath following revelations Labor would extend the government’s protection for gay students to transgender students, pregnant students and those in same-sex relationships.
“I’ve been assured by senior religious leaders these students are not expelled by religious schools,” she said. “Labor’s amendments are a solution looking for a problem which doesn’t exist.
“Each-way Albo is going to learn there is no each-way bet on religious freedom, a fundamental principle of Australian democracy. You either support it or you don’t. This is also an opportunity for him to see if moderate Liberals have the courage of their convictions on religious freedom as well. Tony Burke, Chris Bowen, Jason Clare and other western Sydney Labor MPs can’t keep hiding from their electorates on religious freedom. It’s just too important.
“It’s important enough for One Nation that we will support the government’s bill – despite its lack of support for my COVID-19 discrimination bill – because it is consistent with our fight to protect the democratic rights and freedoms of the Australian people discarded or ignored during the COVID-19 pandemic.”