One Nation Leader Pauline Hanson. Picture: Gary Ramage
One Nation Leader Pauline Hanson. Picture: Gary Ramage

‘Complete sellout’: Hanson slammed

COMMENT

One Nation is a complete sellout.

The party has revealed itself to be completely unprincipled, but worst of all, dangerous.

It was willing to sell our parliament to the highest bidder. It attempted to import America's biggest political and cultural problem to our shores.

And Pauline Hanson's response has been shameful.

Yesterday Senator Hanson's chief of staff James Ashby fronted the cameras, along with the One Nation's Queensland leader Steve Dickson.

The pair were the central figures in the undercover footage recorded by journalist Rodger Muller for Al Jazeera, which showed them meeting members of the American gun lobby.

The National Rifle Association set them up with Koch Industries, a company that makes massive political donations to conservative causes.

Asked by Muller how much money they were after, the pair suggested anywhere between $10 and $20 million.

"If we could get that amount of money, imagine. We could change Australia," Mr Dickson said.

"You'd have the whole government by the balls.

"We can change the voting system in our country, the way people operate, if we've got the money to do it."

One Nation party officials Steve Dickson (left) and James Ashby. Picture: AAP
One Nation party officials Steve Dickson (left) and James Ashby. Picture: AAP

Why wasn't Ms Hanson addressing the media alongside Mr Ashby and Mr Dickson yesterday? Why had she said nothing at all?

Mr Ashby explained she was "quite ill".

This afternoon Senator Hanson finally responded, presumably to show some leadership.

Alas, there was none. She tweeted.

Senator Hanson's words are hardly worth reporting, because she simply repeated some cheap lines from yesterday's so-called sober performance from Mr Ashby and Mr Dickson.

"I was shocked and disgusted with the Al Jazeera hit piece. A Qatari government organisation should not be targeting Australian political parties," she said.

"This has been referred to ASIO. After the full hit piece has been released I'll make a full statement and take all appropriate action."

Pauline Hanson. Picture: AP
Pauline Hanson. Picture: AP

This spin is so infuriatingly offensive.

Al Jazeera's journalistic ethics are way down the pecking order of things that need to be explained in this story.

It is another blatant distraction that Ms Hanson once again hopes will end in martyrdom - just one of the ironies in her response.

And it gets worse.

Now Senator Hanson is wasting ASIO and the AFP's time by asking our best and brightest law enforcement agencies to help give her political cover.

She is accusing Al Jazeera of foreign interference in Australian politics. Its supposed crime? Exposing her own party's efforts to ... solicit foreign interference in Australian politics.

See the problem?

If there is anyone to investigate, it's One Nation.

Sky News host Laura Jayes. Picture: Sam Ruttyn
Sky News host Laura Jayes. Picture: Sam Ruttyn

Mr Ashby and Mr Dickson have been caught red-handed trying to sell out our parliament for a few million dollars in donations.

Have they tried to sell our parliament before? Has One Nation been given secret donations from overseas donors and got away with it?

Senator Hanson had a chance to distance herself from this, but instead she looks complicit.

She took 24 hours to come up with a response, and it's straight from the NRA playbook.

No apology. Just more arrogant dog-whistling.

Voters should not forgive her for this.

Laura Jayes co-hosts First Edition and AM Agenda with Kieran Gilbert weekdays from 5am on Sky News | @ljayes


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