People Are Appalled By Barnaby Joyce’s Comments About Bushfire Victims
He said that two of the people who recently died were "most likely people who voted for the Green party".
Conservative politicians like Gladys Berejiklian and Scott Morrison have been scrambling all week to silence talk of climate change by claiming discussion around the bushfires should not be “politicised”.
Now one of their own, Barnaby Joyce, has come out saying that two of the people who died in the recent NSW fires were likely to be Greens voters — while simultaneously blaming the party for the increasing number of bushfires.
Barnaby Joyce defends his criticism of lack of backburning by Green councils with these eyebrow raising comments : "I acknowledge that the two people who died were most likely people who voted for the Green party – I'm not going to start attacking them."
— Trudy McIntosh (@TrudyMcIntosh) November 11, 2019
Joyce appeared on Sky News this morning to criticise the Greens over their opposition to hazard reduction burns. He claims that complex vegetation management laws are getting in the way of reducing fuel loads and in turn leading to bigger bushfires.
Meanwhile, he remains steadfast in his climate change denial.
“I acknowledge that the two people who died were most likely people who voted for the Green party — I’m not going to start attacking them,” he was quoted as saying.
Whether he wanted to attack them or not, many saw the link as not only presumptuous and ridiculously irrelevant, but in extremely poor taste.
Three people have so far died in the fires in New South Wales; two of them were caught up in the Kangawalla fires, near Glenn Innes, in Barnaby’s own electorate of New England.
It didn’t take long for Labor Senator Kristina Keneally to take him to task for his comments.
“How does he know who they voted for and why does it matter?” she asked in Environment Senate estimates.
“They’re dead, they died in a bushfire. Isn’t that enough?”
I just put these comments to @Birmo in Environment Senate Estimates. He didn’t endorse or repudiate them, but did agree with me that it doesn’t matter who people voted for – when our fellow Australians die in tragic conditions in a bushfire, that’s enough for all of us to mourn. https://t.co/B29CF6iwuj
— Kristina Keneally (@KKeneally) November 12, 2019
But he did attack them. With no knowledge of who they voted for, or who they are as individuals. The man is disgusting.
— 💧Lisa Rafferty 🦄👸🌈 (@Leesidge) November 11, 2019
Barnaby saying Fire selectively targets victims depending on who they have voted for?
— 💧Miriam Gregory (@MimGreg) November 12, 2019
He is referring to the fatal Kangawalla fire in the New England electorate. That’s his own constituency!
— 🕸🕷Arachne🕷🕸 (@ArachneLatro) November 12, 2019