Pauline Hanson Wore A Burqa To Try And Make A Point About “Security” But It Completely Backfired
Just in case you thought Australian politics wasn’t enough of a huge farce at the moment, One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has decided this afternoon to attend Question Time in the Senate dressed in a full-face covering burqa.
"Yep, this is me. You're probably wondering how I ended up in this position…" pic.twitter.com/RIlOXg5FDf
— Tommy Dassalo (@dassalo) August 17, 2017
It wasn’t immediately clear why Hanson decided to try and pull off this particular stunt. One Nation has a policy of banning the burqa in all government buildings, including parliament, but that doesn’t really explain why Hanson herself would put one on in the Senate chamber.
But when Hanson stood up to ask a question, all was revealed. It turns out she was wearing a burqa in parliament in some kind of bizarre protest against wearing the burqa in parliament.
In a media release sent out by her office Hanson said she was “dressed modestly in a full burqa” because “she believed the need to ban full-face coverings in public was an important issue facing modern Australia that needed to be discussed”. She went on to describe full-face coverings as a “security threat”.
Barnaby Joyce: I'll have the wildest contribution to politics this week
Julie Bishop: hold my beer
Pauline Hanson: hold MY beer
— Josh Butler (@JoshButler) August 17, 2017
If she was trying to demonstrate that “security threat” with her stunt, it backfired pretty heavily. The Senate President, Stephen Parry, said that because Hanson had established her identity in the chamber, prior to donning the burqa, there was no security threat and she was able to take part in the parliamentary proceedings.
Hanson’s question about banning the burqa was directed at the attorney-general, George Brandis. Brandis responding by declaring Hanson’s actions a “stunt”.
“I would caution and counsel you to be very, very careful of the offence you may do to the religious sensibilities of other Australians,” Brandis said. “It is absolutely consistent being a good, law abiding Australian, and being a strict, adherent Muslim.”
— Jane Norman (@janeenorman) August 17, 2017
Brandis’ response drew spontaneous applause from the entire Senate, including Labor and Greens politicians.
Pauline Hanson is vile. She's a threat to a decent, caring Australia. Greens & I stand with Muslim communities. https://t.co/DqKADBd71m
— Adam Bandt (@AdamBandt) August 17, 2017
The Senate has become a circus. Hanson is a disgrace. Government is weak and reliant on her vote. Pathetic.
— Sam Dastyari (@samdastyari) August 17, 2017