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Liberal's hypocritical strategy: attack fundamentalist Muslims, woo fundamentalist Christians, divert attention from AWB.



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DEMOCRATS MEDIA FRIDAY 24 FEBRUARY 2006

SENATOR ANDREW BARTLETT AUSTRALIAN DEMOCRATS DEPUTY LEADER

LIBERAL’S HYPOCRITICAL STRATEGY - ATTACK FUNDAMENTALIST MUSLIMS, WOO FUNDAMENTALIST CHRISTIANS, DIVERT ATTENTION FROM AWB

Australian Democrats’ Deputy Leader Andrew Bartlett has slammed the Treasurer’s latest crass targeting of Muslims as a hypocritical attempt to divert attention from the widening AWB scandal.

“The Liberal Party have been openly courting Australia’s fundamentalists Christians, some of whom openly speak of the supremacy of God’s law, yet smears Muslims who have the same beliefs,” Senator Bartlett.

“There can be no doubt that this is a deliberate, calculated smear by the Treasurer. Unlike John Howard, he has no finesse or subtlety in his dog whistling.”

“He is just acting like the arrogant bullies that the Liberal Party have become - picking on an easy target and consciously inflaming community ignorance and fears for short-term political gain.”

“The Government knows these sorts of comments will generate outrage and criticism. As with the refugee issue, it suits them to have a public controversy on a divisive issue, especially at a time when they are starting to be seriously damaged by the AWB scandal.”

“When Pauline Hanson starts weighing into the debate claiming she has been vindicated, you know the government is reverting to its tactics of 2001.”

“Of course Hanson claimed we were being swamped by Asians, not Muslims, but ignorant bigotry towards a minority is easily transferred from one group to another.”

“If there are any true liberals left amongst the crass bullying thugs that now make up the Liberal Party, now is the time for them to speak out. They remained silent in 2001 and allowed grotesque injustices to occur. They must not do the same again,” Senator Bartlett said.

Media contact - Senator Andrew Bartlett - 0418 743 789