Monday, January 07, 2013
Australian State Premier told to man up and quit the 'sexist slurs'
PREMIER Barry O'Farrell is under fire from the state's female Labor MPs who claim he repeatedly undermines women by making snide and sexist remarks.
Acting Opposition Leader Linda Burney said Mr O'Farrell continually singled out women for abuse during parliament and had referred to her as a "witch" and a "hooker" during a series of stinging personal attacks.
The Canterbury MP said Mr O'Farrell had also called fellow Labor MP Carmel Tebbutt a "puppy" and that it was time for Mr O'Farrell to "behave like a Premier" and treat women with greater respect.
But a spokesman for the Premier dismissed Ms Burney's claims. "Debate in the NSW Parliament has always been robust," he said. "It is a shame Linda Burney doesn't put the same effort into policy development that she seems to put into trying to find issues to take offence at when there are none."
On October 24, the Premier told parliament Ms Burney could "keep casting her spells; they will have no effect".
In June, 2011, Mr O'Farrell said there had been some criticism of the NSW rugby league team's front row and said the team could use a new hooker "perhaps the member for Canterbury".
"He said it in reference to rugby league, but everyone knows what kind of hooker he was really referring to," Ms Burney said.
She said his attacks on former premier Kristina Keneally as the "Kim Kardashian" of NSW politics had been equally offensive to the state's women.
"To imply that Kristina Keneally was somehow vacuous and superficial is offensive; she is a highly accomplished woman and the state's first female premier," she said. [She also presided over the biggest electoral landslide against her party for many years. An amusing example of a "highly accomplished woman"!]