National broadcasters are publicly attacking politicians by invoking memory of their dead parents, Australians overwhelmingly agree that climate change is going to end very poorly, and more political candidates have been caught out or old social media posts. You know what that means everyone!
The day started with the Daily Telegraph working up probably the biggest own goal of the election campaign so far – and it wasn’t even from a politician! The Tele ran a front page story from its state political reporter Anna Caldwell, wherein she tried to assert that a story Bill Shorten had told about his mother’s hard life didn’t hold water because she went to university in her late ’50s to achieve her dream of becoming a lawyer. Slam dunk.
Just about everyone thought this take was monumentally bad – even Andrew motherfuckin’ Bolt.
Shorten addressed it at multiple points throughout the day, tearing up at one point when discussing News Corp and his late mum.
Bill Shorten fought back tears earlier today as he responded to a News Corp story about his mother. pic.twitter.com/HKIXMxsIMJ
— SBS News (@SBSNews) May 8, 2019
In more end-of-the-world news, both major parties were grilled on a new report from the UN that listed one million species at risk of extinction and a human population in jeopardy. Not good! A poll from the Lowy Institute also found that the majority of Australians think global warming is a critical threat, with 64% of adults making climate change the number one threat to the country’s national interests. If only they could just have a sit down chat with the hosts of Sky News or Tony Abbott himself, then they’d all understand that it’s natural that I’m currently sweating in the office in the middle of Autumn. Somebody sort this mob out!!!
Greens leader Richard Di Natale was forced to defend, and then kick out, a candidate for old social media posts. The Greens candidate for the seat of Lalor in Melbourne, Jay Dessi, quit after News Corp uncovered a bunch of posts. Here’s just one example:
“Mr Dessi had also referred to gamers who like violent video games as “faggots”, slammed a movement fighting to bring African war lord Joseph Kony to justice as “goddamn retards”, and liked an image of an impoverished black child with the caption “doesn’t own a computer, can still play minesweeper”.” Yikes.
Of course, none of these things are good – but it will be interesting to see how younger political candidates deal with the increasing political dirt team tactic of picking up old Facebook posts.
Tonight will be the third and final leaders debate at the National Press Club. Tune in to watch Scott Morrison tell everyone he’s not Bill Shorten, and to watch Bill Shorten say he knows what Australia wants, and what Australians want is a better Australia.