ANALYSIS: Porter has left Morrison looking for a circuit breaker — and he may only have one choice
The emotion appeared genuine, the talk of seeking help with his mental health understandable, but here's the bottom line: Christian Porter is digging in, writes David Speers.
Print text onlyPrintCancelThe emotion appeared genuine, the talk of seeking help with his mental health understandable, but here's the bottom line: Christian Porter is digging in.He has no plans to stand down and doesn't want an independent inquiry into claims he raped a 16-year-old girl in 1988. The Attorney-General acknowledged, however, this is not his call to make. Ultimately his political fate rests with the Prime Minister.
Porter's extraordinary press conference professing his innocence on the allegation of rape ("I didn't do it"), his anger towards the media ("No journalist has put the detail of the allegations to me in a way that would allow seeking a response, not ever") and his fear of all of this might destroy the rule of law in this country, doesn't alter the conundrum facing Scott Morrison.
Does he continue to stand by his Minister and resist the pressure for an independent inquiry, or does he acknowledge the only way through this is to commission some sort of investigation?Porter's state of mindPorter is taking two weeks off to seek mental health support and then plans to return. There was no doubt in his mind about the need to continue as Attorney-General. headtopics.com
This leaves the ball squarely in Morrison's court. Deferring to law enforcement authorities may have been an understandable initial response for the Prime Minister, but after NSW Police concluded there was "insufficient admissible evidence" to pursue a criminal charge, it's now entirely up to Morrison to decide what to do next.
In the arguments both for and against an independent inquiry, there has been a great deal of focus on precedents. Those in favour of an inquiry point to the Dyson Heydon precedent. The High Court commissioned an independent inquiry into claims of sexual harassment made against the former judge. If it was good enough for the High Court, why not the government? Porter says the difference is the High Court was dealing with a "contemporaneous workplace" matter.
Perhaps, but in this case we're dealing with the public confidence in the nation's first law officer.Space to play or pause, M to mute, left and right arrows to seek, up and down arrows for volume.WatchDuration: 33 minutes 35 seconds33Christian Porter identifies himself as Cabinet minister facing historical rape allegation
A different precedentThose arguing against an inquiry, including Porter himself, point to a different precedent, that of Bill Shorten. Much like Porter now, the then-Opposition Leader outed himself in 2014 as the "unnamed senior Labor figure" accused of raping a woman in the 1980s. He went public after Victorian Police concluded there was "no reasonable prospect of conviction." There was no demand from either side of politics at the time for a further inquiry. Both sides accepted the outcome and the historical allegation largely died as a mainstream political issue. headtopics.com
It's worth noting, however, the allegation did threaten to re-emerge during the 2019 election campaign.At the time, Labor suspected the Prime Minister was making a veiled reference to Shorten when he spoke about the difficulty women often face in coming forward.
"One of the things that often happens with [rape] is they're not believed and their stories are not believed and it's important that their stories are believed and they know that if they come forward their stories will be believed," Morrison said. "Women in those circumstances should have a greater sense of confidence that if they tell their stories they will be believed."
It's not a sentiment the Prime Minister has repeated in relation to the allegation against Porter.Porter is taking two weeks off to seek mental health support and then plans to return.()A circuit breakerThe reality is there's no clear precedent for the current dilemma. Neither the Heydon nor Shorten examples provide a template for what to do when the nation's Attorney-General is accused of raping someone police can no longer speak to.
This hasn't happened before and it's a situation unlikely to be repeated.Porter fears the "rule of law" would be threatened if he were to stand down. It's an appeal to the core belief of all democrats and an exaggeration to be sure. headtopics.com
Still, there is an entirely legitimate concern about the standard that's set here. In deciding the best way forward, it's important not to do anything here that will encourage vexatious complaints against innocent Cabinet ministers.Equally, it's difficult to believe there will be many future cases involving a deceased complainant, whose committed group of friends and supporters have put forward such a serious, detailed allegation against an Attorney-General.
The pressure for a public inquiry won't quickly dissipate. Labor has ensured that. So too has the public mood. Against the backdrop of Brittany Higgins, Grace Tame and other brave women who have come forward, there is a great political danger for the Morrison Government if it's not seen to be doing all within its power to ensure its own Cabinet members are beyond reproach.
The Prime Minister must now weigh whether to call an inquiry which Porter clearly thinks would be an unfair process ("What would I say before that inquiry?", he asked rhetorically) or resist such a step and face even further criticism his government is not listening to victims; not giving women confidence their stories will be heard and "believed".
An inquiry by a respected former judge or panel of independent experts, looking at the "balance of probabilities" in this case may not be the perfect answer, but it may be the only viable option left available to deliver some closure in this unusual case.
Politically, it may also be the only circuit breaker for a Prime Minister in a difficult position.David Speers is the host of Insiders, which airs on ABC TV at 9am on Sunday or on iView. Read more: ABC News »
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The 4corners report on the Canberra bubble to be replaysed Turn all said Porter has been a big problem. Did he kill the rape victim I thought the emotion 'appeared genuine' when he had a burst of anger during which you could almost see him talking himself down- I mustn't look aggressive. I've got to look humble
Maybe two choices, ignore the insane Lefty Flogs in the media would be a great start. That’s still one choice more than all the women he has railroaded. Two pathetic excuses for men and as human beings two National embarrassments and two pathological Liars Ministerial Standards 7.1 Australia has never had a worse group of failed characters on its Government front-bench. Not one of them can be called decent and honourable. Not one.
Christian Porter’s opinion on whether there should be an independent inquiry is totally irrelevant. He cannot be objective as he is one of the parties involved. I do not have confidence in him doing the job of attorney general until his suitability is tested. It's a criminal act an independent inquiry would be a police investigation. Where were all the calls for an independent inquiry when the police failed to interview any witness of billshortenmp rape case, or when the unions and AlboMP and the rest of the labor party harassed her
I read the first sentence and stopped reading... what rubbish!! Porter is innocent the case is closed.... Well blow me down ... david speers is being a real journo. Interesting story auspol2021 auspol The only emotion that appeared to me was 'fear of losing my ride on the Gravy Train'. Important difference is police conclusion was with benefit of live witness in Shorten's case. Porter's may not have been similarly dismissed.
The emotion appeared genuine? Managed to flip that switch real quick as soon as he tried to whataboutism in Labor So much for scumos 2019 statement 'rape victims must be believed' He believes porters story over the rapist. His party stood by the alleged serial rapist over allegations made by Higgins and others. This party hides serious crimes instead of acting and protecting victims. auspol
GUILTY as Charged 100 PERCENT we the people know what you did The still pushing the line that grave criminal allegations can be determined by a PM establishing an inquiry to determine guilt or innocence on the balance of probabilities? It is an insane, stupid, dangerous idea and the national broadcaster should know better.
Porter and Morrison just don’t get it , approve an investigation an inquiry, if Porter is innocent ( this time) then he’ll be absolved of his sins and go to church with Morrison and Jen PorterResign Conveniently left out is that Shorten cooperated and participated with a 10mnth police investigation before being cleared. Porter's case must be investigated too, if not by police then an independent review of what's known. Will be zero resolution until properly investigated.
Would that be that ScottMorrisonMP resigns.....😀 It is important to note what Porter said - and what he didn't say. He denied having slept with the girl. He never denied raping her which is rather different. He never said that he had had no sexual contact with her or that any sexual contact with her was consensual.
Some tweets in this thread just proves how many dumb fucking Australians there are in this country!! The circuit breaker is the precedent established by Bill Shorten I hope king marketer Scotty sticks his fingers in it 'genuine' emotion from a sociopath, most likely rapist, get real David speers. I expect biased commentary from you but this is pathetic.
Could a circuit breaker be an integrity commission? NotMovingOn You have been tarnished! Your face show the guilt! Three ministers, David Coleman, Porter and now Reynolds, all off sick due to their own incompetence. Something’s rotten in the state of Denmark Morrison is going to Bluff This Out! Australians, and particularly Australian Women, should NEVER FORGET THIS! Scott Morrison Values POWER, Over giving this shocking case its Full Due! Despicable.
You went against her heartbroken grieving parents wishes for the sole purpose of weoponising this tragedy to smash the Liberal Party. You make me sick ABC are the lowest form of life. This girls parents who advised you she has suffered a life time of mental illness and has Bipolar.... they begged you to please not run with this story as her allegations could possibly be embellished or made up.
I believe him and I believe in him. It will take more than a circuit breaker, the Parliament needs a complete rewiring. For Porter to say an independent inquiry is not needed because the alleged rape is not a workplace matter is ridiculous 'The emotion appeared genuine,' cos it's all about him. We're not stupid.
Where are 'boat people' when you need them ? The emotion appeared genuine? Porter and Reynolds both have to leave politics! NOW!!!!! Call An Election Now! he needs to go and all his mates that covered up for him, all his staff and his cronies mates like Morrison & frydenburg Time to change the toxic culture against women everywhere Most men who rape & get away with it will continue to abuse & rape women rape is about power & disrespect. In respect to the victim ChristianPorter should be investigated. BREAKING Ibelieveher Australia QandA
Election election election - late April 21... as previously stated ScottMorrisonMP AlboMP AdamBandt PaulineHansonOz 7NewsAustralia 9NewsAUS abc730 Leave him be the police have said there is no evidence of a crime but of course this is great trash news for poor journalism. Brought to us this morning, a distraction by Lachlan and Rupert ...what a coincidence.
NotleyTrevor An independent inquiry must go ahead. Welcome to Donald Trump syndrome. This is the leftist agenda. Any means to destroy anybody that disagrees with them. Utter rubbish! David Speers adding to the ABCs trial by media What the prime minister doesn't know he is facing is A Leadership Challenge. Anyone with half a brain would have. Resigned in the interests of the party. Porter's refusal to resign reveals his ambitions. Which are clinical and cold and seek the top job.
That's written by David Speers 🤣 The emotion was a pity party for himself. Speers is Morrison's mouthpiece; ergo Morrison must really want Porter gone.) What's worse? The RAPIST or self righteous 'honorable' politician piggies WHO COVER IT UP, DENY KNOWLEDGE & PROTECT IDENTITY EVEN WHEN THEY COULD DO SO UNDER PARLIAMENTARY PRIVILEGE! MINISTER DOES NOT STEP ASIDE THEN LNP IS HISTORY! LAWS FOR US, DIFFERENT LAW FOR POLLIE PIGGIES!
If his mental health is suffering then he cannot continue in his position. Australia needs people who are fit for duty to hold down ministerial positions. The accusations are separate but also important to the lack of integrity being shown by Porter the PM must act now! The emotion might have 'appeared genuine' but that makes it no less important to BelieveWomen
I hear the WA state Liberals may need a new leader, perhaps? Unless Troy “chair sniffer” Buswell is running. Can people stop using the phrase 'circuit breaker', please!? An innocent man would want a thorough investigation to clear his name. Especially if that man held high legal office. Also curious how one could deny the contents of an unread letter...
At his level of privilege and power, surely the innocent would comply/encourage any due process to clear his name. Only way to restore faith in his leadership. Do the damn commission, this woman can’t defend herself anymore. Try asking the NSW Police why their inquiry wasn’t started in full in 2019 given it’s the Cwth AG.
You ABC had a professor of Law on this morning, but she does not deal in Criminal LAW? Though one thing that become clear nswpolice did not interview cporterwa is bad, does not an investigation is to follow the evidence, interviewing the alleged perpeture be part of the process He may or may not be a rapist, but he is most definitely a slimy creep, a hypocrite and a bully. ChristianPorter LNPCrimefamily auspol
All he has to do is cooperate with an inquiry. What’s he going to say? I do not recall? No comment? And it will be over He has effectively stood down. As did Reynolds. This govt makes up the rules as they see fit. They consistently thumb their nose at convention & say whatever & whenever it suits them. Crying on demand is now a thing. Morrison is the slimiest most antipathetic PM we’ve ever seen.
Do bushfires even have circuit brakers, and does Scotty even hold a switch? 'A situation that is unlikely to be repeated' With that I disagree. If the AG is destroyed, there will be a template that will be rolled out. The target will simply be switched. 'Porter has left Morrison looking for a circuit breaker' Background on Reynolds, take the heat off Porter.
I will be advising my son to record all interactions with females for the sake of his future. Women can be way too flexible with “their truth”so he needs to safeguard himself with as many documented facts as possible. Something happened! We all guessed who it was before the announcement wasn’t hard to work out
There is really only one circuit breaker, election. Or smaller alternative by election ABC=GRUBS, this trial by media has to stop, you didn’t carry on like this when it was Bill Shorten, the guy is innocent until proven guilty, the corona virus not giving you enough headlines now? How about all you do gooders go and get a real job and leave investigation to police
What a gullible man speers is with the first line. Crocodile tears c’mon dobetter boysclub The context when claims were made against Shorten was very different to now. They were made before the metoo movement, and they weren’t aired just a couple of weeks after another rape allegation involving Parliament House workplace and culture. Context matters.
Speers usual fence-sitting horse race summary. Totally devoid of feeling or understanding. Time for leadership Mr Prime Minister. Apply it or step aside. Politicians everywhere in the world gets mentally sick or stomach sickness relief of their crimes! Not needed. Would be unheard off to investigate a complaint from a deceased person.
Imgaine voting for this lot! Ignore the latest allegation, one that he’d of course deny, his track record as shown by 4corners & how the matter was handled by him (& the gov), one has to question his suitability as the first law officer in the land. The only genuine emotion was concern about his own well-being. He doesn’t care about any one else and the pain and misery he has caused through his actions
Porter's just committed political suicide.....but will he take The Swinging Dks with him? Police didn't speak to Cash, case closed, didn't speak to Taylor case closed, didn't speak to Porter case closed, Higgins alleged rapist, nope. What is the rule of law for? How many others are there? What about the question about other complaints and an NDA.. way more stories not allowed to be discussed it sounds. Women are furious, this government is done ✔️
Porter’s “emotion” was as genuine as a 30 cent coin 😏 Morrison hates women even more than he loves political expediency; he only believes in “justice” if it benefits his mates; & he’s arrogant enough to think he can get away with protecting the rapists in his midst. 🤷♀️ SimonBanksHB Does the PM believe that Porter is a fit and proper person to be the AG - and if so is that beyond reasonable doubt?
Must vote this lot out hopeless Cut him loose....he's a liability not even spin doctor Morrison can handle Porter and Reynolds must be sacked immediately. One is accused of raping a 16YO and the other deliberately covered up the rape of one of her staff then destroyed evidence. The entire government is in disrepute ScottMorrisonMP call an election let the people decide your fate
Another rubbish piece fabricating the news not reporting. Defund this organisation seriously. No one left Morrison in any situation ScottyFromCoverUps is the Architect of all the responses from his Government as he says & reminds everyone that “He’s the Prime Minister”. Odd way to start the article, I know someone else who had some genuine emotion but she can't tell us about them cause she's no longer with us...
All these blokes care about is hanging on to their power and backhander’s, tears knowing both are over? Defund the ABC! It’s an utter disgrace. Did TurnbullMalcolm release this so called anonymous dossier to the ABC? As funders of the ABC we want to know! Gee poor boobee, it was ok to hound Shorten and conduct a RC into the alleged rape when he was teen...just resign and focus on your 'mental health'
Classic Disgraceful ABC Witch Hunt along with the other Not Believable Brittany story. ABC should be defunded for pushing Political attacks with and for Labor. Your sheep are happy with no evidence which is Sad n Dangerous The damage is already done, everything over the past multiple years has been building to this crescendo, and if you never saw this coming, then you have no idea about commenting on political issues at all.
The emotion appeared genuine. I'm glad you people aren't voting for academy awards FFS This part 👇...further proof ScottyFromCoverUps is the master of hypocrisy 🤬🤬🤬 ChristianPorterMustResign JusticeForKate NotMovingOn SACK HIM! Imagine he is one of the suffering struggling Aussies who u hate & does not deserve reapect!!
Then there's the precedent of the former Deputy PM who was 'cleared' by an internal party investigation. “The emotion appeared genuine”, what a lot of bullhit from LNPCorruptionParty lackey David Speers. Porter’s crocodile tears are as genuine as his boss’ “compassion”. This isn't about right or wrong. It's about the leftest media wanting to punish the LNP for winning government. They've smelt blood, now they'll go for the jugular.
The PM needs to step up and take strong action against Ministers who blatantly do the wrong thing, break the law and commit crimes if proven guilty. Grow some and start leading like you were chosen to do. If public schools were to advertise, they'd be like 'Look at those two'. The list just grows and grows. There is no circuit breaker.
Our Attorney General, the Minister for Defense.....great cabinet ScottMorrisonMP 👌🏻 Why do my taxes fund a radicalized hate group ScottMorrisonMP? My taxes are meant to fund a news network, not a nasty radical activist group... Porter stated he had not been contacted by any authoritive department with enquiry into allegations. So NSW Police have closed the case without any discussion with Porter!? I think Morrison ordered it case closed.
You can't polish a turd If scomo had just did his job stood him down called for an independent enquiry hear the facts on both sides just as the lawyer has stated this out come could of been avoided, you would think the accused would want to clear his name makes you wonder, the pm is to blame I mean Jeez.. how many more cabinet ministers gotta be under cloud for us to finally vote this mobs out!!!
Beyond repair. They've abused the trust of Australians and displayed their colours all too clearly... auspol One guy who hasn't read the dossier asks the other guy who hasn't read the dossier if he did the things in the dossier and he says I definitely did not, even though I haven't read the dossier. Sounds plausible. auspol CabinetRapist CabinetMinister
“The AG acknowledged this is not his call to make. Ultimately his political fate rests with the Prime Minister.” Speers Poppycock. Porter could have resigned last week to limit damage to his reputation & party, but instead tried to lie & blunder his way through. pfft auspol Purdue weaponary from Lazer development from Velma barten valma Purdue ,
LyndaFrench19 Precedent been set with other persons stepping aside until, so Sqotty’s got to decide ASAP or if he is game, call an election ASAP Maybe had Mr. Porter given Tudgey a Cartier watch it would be a cut and dried decision. No need to ask Jen; untenable act, would have to resign. But just an ordinary anal rape? Nothing to see here! CabinetRapist
Man forced to prove his innocence for something he claims he didn’t do and no-one can prove that he did. This is not our legal system. I’m still finding it unbelievable and irresponsible that neither men actually read he accusation details. We will never know the truth of it. This Government are bullies, liars amd grubs. Time2BScottFree
he can dig in as much as he wants He's history at the end of the day! I do wonder still about how David McBride, Bernard Collaery and Witness K facing secret trials and imprisonment under this Attorney general feel about the pious right to a fair trial talk. It was the incredibly sincere looking tears he forced out and the 'whataboutisms' that made me believe him.... The only thing he was fighting back was saying 'the crazy b**** is dead now so none of you can prove shit'.
RAPE CLAIM Equal treatment U Think Hmm? Christin Porter says I have been accused of something that never happened Leftie Media: Guilty until proven innocent Bill Shorten said Nothing happened Lefty Media: Innocent till proven Guilty