The sobbing Liberal senator claims the Labor senator said “the most embarrassing thing” and shouts “I’m disgusted with you” over text messages.
A Liberal senator broke down in tears, claiming a Labor rival said “the most embarrassing thing” during a debate on Nazi symbolism.
Liberal Sarah Henderson was in tears and yelled across the camera at Labor minister Murray Watt, telling him: ‘I’m upset with you.’
It’s unclear what Watt, who withdrew his comment, told Henderson.
However, senators in the chamber said the bizarre confrontation was related to text messages she sent to the Victorian Liberal leader, who is trying to oust a state MP for attending the anti-transgender rights rally in Melbourne where the Nazis appeared.
The opposition is pushing for a ban on Nazi symbols after a protest in Melbourne drew neo-Nazis, who used the Sieg Heil salute.
Liberal Sarah Henderson was in tears and yelled across the camera at Labor minister Murray Watt.
Neo-Nazis hijacked a ‘Let Women Speak’ rally, organized by English anti-trans activist Kellie-Jay Keen-Minshull, outside the Victorian State Parliament on Saturday.
Pro-trans counter-protesters turned up to challenge Ms Keen-Minshull’s event, but later found themselves opposing a group of black-clad men who taunted them with Hitler salutes.
In the Senate, Liberal leader Michaelia Cash said the push to ban the Nazi symbol had to take precedence.
“Every Australian should find the actions of that small group of protesters who dared to use the offensive Nazi salute,” he said.
“Those who display Nazi symbols or use the Nazi salute are ignoring the past or are deliberately promoting evil.”
It is not clear what Mr Watt, who withdrew his comment, said to Ms Henderson.
Finance Minister Katy Gallager has said there is no place in Australia for Nazi ideology.
“But I think we should also recognize that this is a complex area of the law and any move to ban Nazi symbols deserves serious consideration,” he said.
‘The Australian people deserve better. We should unite, we should send a loud voice about the events we saw in Victoria.
‘This bill needs serious consideration, not a gimmick.’
But Green senator Sarah Hanson-Young responded by saying that politicizing the issue would drag the debate into the gutter.
“I don’t think anything we’ve shown the Australian people…is anything to be proud of,” he said during the debate.
“The politicking on this issue, which is serious, which is sensitive, which is fundamentally about the values of a respectful and democratic nation, should not be washed away.”
The push to get the bill debated ultimately failed, with all parties agreeing it was an important issue to discuss, but Labour, the Greens and One Nation accused the opposition of presenting it as a last-minute stunt.