Tony Abbott Still Thinks The Liberals Should Preference One Nation Above Labor

You can always bet on Tony to pick the wrong side.

Tony Abbott and Pauline Hanson, the latter of One Nation

Pauline Hanson and One Nation have had a rough few days.

First, Al Jazeera published the results of an undercover investigation that found the far-right party was trying to source funds from the Americans to loosen Australia’s gun laws. Then more footage dropped, appearing to show Hanson questioning the truth behind the Port Arthur Massacre. Around the time the investigation dropped, Hanson was nowhere to be found — it was alleged that she was recovering from a tick bite on her face that had made her ‘unrecognisable’.

Shortly thereafter, Scott Morrison, facing considerable pressure from the press and the Australian public, finally acquiesced, and agreed to preference One Nation after Labor on its how-to-vote cards in the upcoming federal election. And finally, the whole mess was capped off with a disastrous press conference in which Hanson confused the NRA and the NRMA, and generally came off like someone not quite in charge of the facts.

But, hey, at least Hanson and her cronies have one noted Australian politician on their side. Tony Abbott, the man who cannot bear to hold an opinion unless he is the only one holding it, has continued to spout the line that his party should support the notoriously xenophobic One Nation.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Abbott has doubled down on comments he made in March of last year concerning the party. Then, he argued that One Nation should be preferenced above Labor and The Greens, given that the Liberals have been able to “work constructively in the senate” with the anti-immigration party.

Through a spokesperson, Abbott reiterated his belief that Hanson and her ilk should be preferenced higher than most on the Liberal how-to-vote cards. He also claimed that given there’s no candidate for the far-right party in Warringah, the question of preferencing them “has no relevance to his re-election.”

But of course, there is significant relevance to the whole mess. After all, how could it ever be considered irrelevant for a former Prime Minister of this country to argue that a party founded on fundamentally racist principles was, to directly quote his words, “constructive”?