Abetz’s objections to a Federal ICAC comically hypocritical

Thursday 21st April 2016 0:00

Australian Workers’ Union National Secretary Scott McDine has slammed former Workplace Minister Eric Abetz for comments made during a Senate committee into a potential National Integrity Commission this morning. 

In raising his objections to a ‘Federal ICAC’ Senator Abetz wondered: "When do we start impugning people's reputation by saying 'it wasn't criminal behaviour but …' and leaving people's reputation besmirched?"

Mr McDine said Senator Abetz’s remarks were hypocritical on a range of levels, but perhaps most particularly in the context of the Senator’s hyper-aggressive efforts to smear former Prime Minister Julia Gillard. 

“Comments like this make you wonder if Mr Abetz has any of the normal human capacity for self-reflection,” Mr McDine said. 

“Here is a bloke who dedicated much of his brief time on the frontbench to using quasi-legal constructions to impugn the reputations of his political enemies in the labour movement.

“He spent most of his time in opposition trying desperately to smear the reputation of our first female prime minister over allegations that were later rejected by his own carefully curated kangaroo court. 

“There are very sound arguments in favour of not using the investigation of misconduct that falls short of criminal behaviour to damage someone’s reputation. However they are not arguments that Eric Abetz can make with any semblance of credibility. 

“Perhaps after Mr Abetz apologises to Julia Gillard he could consider returning to the topic. 

“There should absolutely be a Federal ICAC. If Mr Abetz has concerns about that concept it would be fair to assume that those concerns do not stem from principle.”

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