CONTENT WARNING: This article discusses rape and suicide.

Australia watched in shock as Attorney-General Christian Porter reveled himself to be the person accused of raping a 16-year-old girl in 1988, allegations which he wholly denies.

The alleged rape was first reported to police in February, 2020, before the woman took her own life in June of that year. The government was formally made aware of the allegations last week, but it wasn’t until Wednesday that Porter publicly admitted that he was the alleged perpetrator.

In his emotional press conference, he denied the allegations and said that he wouldn’t be stepping down as Attorney-General.

“If you could just imagine, and I know that we’re all cynics and this is a hard and tough environment, but just imagine for a second that it’s not true, that for whatever the recollection and belief that im sure was strongly held, it’s just not true, just imagine it for a second,” he said, on the verge of tears.

Right off the bat, people criticised Porter for what they perceived to be crocodile tears and for just centering the whole thing around himself instead of, you know, the alleged victim, her family and her friends.

Regardless of whether or not the allegations are true – and to be clear he totally denies the allegations – now is not the time to be playing the victim.

Many on social media expressed the view that it’s pretty poor taste to cry victim when a woman has literally taken her own life, especially when in the context an alleged rape.

People then started questioning a whole bunch of aspects in Porter’s story.

Things like his sporadic memories from that night or his recollection of events more recently raised more questions than they appeared to answer.

Heaps of people also slammed Porter for saying he simply couldn’t step aside because it’s set a precedent.

“My guess is that if I were to resign, and that were to set a new standard, there would be no need for an Attorney-General because there would be no rule of law left to protect in this country,” he said in his press conference.

People also found it frustrating that Porter wanted sympathy when his own damn party appears to have shown little sympathy for the struggles of others.

Aside from Porter himself overseeing the implementation of Robodebt when he was Minister for Social Services, the current Liberal government has plenty of other policies which could probably have used a little more empathy during the planning process.

The fact that he wanted to put politics aside for the moment also felt a bit hypocritical for many people.

In summary, we’re not saying the allegations are true, but rather that the whole press conference was a shit show and it seems little will change in the near future.

While he’s not standing down, Christian Porter is going on a bit of a break to mentally and emotionally regroup.

In the meantime, the acting Attorney-General will be Michaelia Cash… the recent boss of alleged Parliament House rape survivor Brittany Higgins.

Another day in Australia.


Help is available.

If you require immediate assistance, please call 000.

If you’d like to speak to someone about sexual violence, please call the 1800 Respect hotline on 1800 737 732 or chat online

Under 25? You can reach Kids Helpline at 1800 55 1800 or chat online.

Image: Getty Images / Paul Kane