This Labor Senator Has Spent The Entire Week Absolutely Tearing Into The Government

Labor senator Katy Gallagher has no problem holding the government accountable.

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Labor senator Katy Gallagher has been asking all the hard questions in the Senate estimates this week, and it hasn’t gone unnoticed.

The purpose of the estimates is to allow senators to scrutinise how the government in power is spending taxpayer’s money. It’s pretty much a time to hold the government accountable for their actions — which is something Gallagher clearly has no problem doing.

Gallagher has been tweeting videos from the estimates hearing throughout the week, in which she pokes and prods the government on a series of issues.

What’s She Been Fighting For? 

Most notably, the Labor senator has been pressing for answers about how the government handled Brittany Higgins‘ allegations of sexual assault inside Parliament House.

On the first day of the hearings, Gallagher asked the Department of Parliamentary Services whether their protocols or procedures for dealing with sexual assault or rape allegations inside Parliament House had improved.

The department said ‘no’, despite it being two years since the rape allegedly occurred — an answer that Higgins deemed ‘downright negligent’.

Just days later, while still addressing the Higgins case, Gallagher pressed for details around when Scott Morrison’s office really found out about the alleged sexual assault.

Who knew what and when about Higgins’ alleged assault case has been a persistent issue for the PM, who continues to play the ‘I didn’t know anything’ card. So, Gallagher asked outright who was at a meeting where the firing of Higgins’ alleged rapist was discussed.

Reluctantly answering her question, the Department of Finance and Public Administration confirmed that pretty much every important person that should’ve been there was in attendance, including the PM’s office and former Defence Minister Linda Reynold’s office.

Gallagher translated that to mean that Morrison’s office likely knew about the assault much earlier than they are claiming.

Where’s All That Money Going? 

During another estimates hearing, Gallagher questioned the billions of dollars of funding that have gone to government-held seats in this year’s budget.

“When you see outcomes like 91% of the Safer Communities funds going to government held seats, you don’t think there’s a problem with that?” she asked.

She continued to prod the Minister for Finance Simon Birmingham for more transparency on changes that were made to the funding of all grant programs.

While holding up a handful of blacked-out sheets of paper that she had been given — trying not to laugh — she said to the room: “This is the details of the changes that were made.”

Gallagher asked whether the Senate was able to give her a proper list that she could read, to which Birmingham replied that he didn’t have a copy on him.

This year’s budget estimates run until June 4.