Danby’s O’Farrell attack answered

March 28, 2011 Agencies
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The Leader of the Opposition in the Senate, Eric Abetz has responded to Labor MP Michael Danby’s criticism of new NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell following the Party’s decision not to introduce preferences in the NSW seat of Marrickville being contested by mayor Fiona Byrne who is calling for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel.


Senator Eric Abetz

I refer to your article entitled BDS Opposition swells, 25/3/11, in which Michael Danby described the Liberal Party’s failure to allocate preferences in Marrickville as an “act of cowardice”.

This is rich given that NSW Labor directed preferences to the Greens candidate, Fiona Byrne!

That’s right, Labor gave second preferences to anti-Israel, BDS advocate, Fiona Byrne, whereas the Liberal Party refused to give Byrne or any other candidate second preference.

Danby’s attempt to distance Labor from Fiona Byrne’s BDS policy is as disingenuous as his suggestion that the Labor councillors who supported Fiona Byrne’s BDS motion at Marrickville Council “don’t represent the Federal Labor Party”.

Early last week, Labor’s Senate Leader, Chris Evans was given the opportunity to condemn Greens Leader, Bob Brown, for failing to repudiate Fiona Byrne’s extremist views on Israel, yet he failed explicitly to do so.

This is what led the Coalition the next day to force the issue by moving its notice of motion in the Senate, denouncing the Israeli Boycott by Marrickville Council and condemning any expansion of it.

Fortunately Fiona Byrne was not elected in Marrickville and Liberal Local Government Spokesman, Chris Hartcher has foreshadowed he will not tolerate such foreign policy forays by local councils.

The fact is – because of its reliance on the Greens to govern – Labor is compromised from top to bottom on such issues.  Michael Danby’s disingenuous effort to misrepresent the situation on the eve on the state election is regrettable.


Eric Abetz

Leader of the Opposition in the Senate

Eric Abetz is the Liberal Senator for Tasmania



2 Responses to “Danby’s O’Farrell attack answered”
  1. Ricardo says:

    Danby is simply a hypocrite.

  2. Lynne Newington says:

    Chris Hartcher has foreshadowed he will not tolerate such foreign policy foray’s by local councils. I could never imagine a Liberal or Labour, State or Local Spokesperson in Victoria doing otherwise either.
    The same goes for the local council I reside in.

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