WA Liberal Senator makes her name as "racist rumour troll" in Senate Estimates

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WA Liberal Senator makes her name as "racist rumour troll" in Senate Estimates

Media Release
Wednesday February 23, 2011 7:30am WST
For Immediate Release
No Embargoes

"The thus far largely unknown WA Liberal Senator Michaelia Cash is another Liberal that ought to be publicly condemned and unambiguously slammed by Liberal leader Tony Abbott after her deeply offensive line of questioning of DIAC Secretary Andrew Metcalfe during Senate Estimates on Monday evening, where she, armed with "spam email facts" acted as a "rumour troll", as it's called in online circles, attempting to bait Mr Metcalfe over p-rnography, gay s-x and child p-rn," WA Human Rights group Project SafeCom said this morning.

Senator Cash's comments - who could well be nicknamed as "Cash for Condoms" after her rather disgusting attempts to question Mr Metcalfe - were only reported by online media outlet Crikey yesterday (transcript below). Her questions were reportedly solely based on the contents of a spam email similar to emails alleging asylum seekers receive more benefits than pensioners.

"Senator Cash, a qualified and experienced lawyer, has deeply disgraced herself in Senate Estimates asking whether detained asylum seekers are accessing child p-rnography on the internet, and she has taken to join the base levels of shock jocks like Alan Jones in a deplorable attempt at race baiting, and the Liberal party should condemn her attitude" Project SafeCom said.

"Thus far we've seen Liberal leader Tony Abbott merely pay lipservice to the national outrage over comments over the cost of asylum seeker funerals by his immigration spokesman Scott Morrison and brazen anti-muslim comments by Cory Bernardi, but it remains to be seen whether Abbott puts his money where his mouth is about entrenched racism in some sections of the Liberal party," spokesman Jack H Smit said.

"Tony Abbott has today another opportunity to remain outspoken as the party leader over issues of race and vilification of asylum seekers, and we demand that he takes full, public and outspoken action against the race baiting by Senator Cash," Mr Smit concluded.

Jack H Smit
Project SafeCom Inc.
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New angle for the Coalition? Asylum seekers and child p-rn...

Tuesday, 22 February 2011
by Bernard Keane

Western Australian Senator Michaelia Cash has used a late-night Estimates sitting to suggest detained asylum seekers may be accessing child p-rnography.

Last night in the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee, Senator Cash asked a series of question of Immigration Department officials about condom and p-rnography use by detainees. An anti-asylum seeker spam email currently circulating lists "sewerage systems blocked with condoms" among outrages perpetrated by detainees, noting they had been used for gay s-x.

Condom vending machines are available in immigration detention facilities. They are also in NSW jails and have been trialled in Queensland -- although detention for asylum seekers is not intended as punitive or correctional. Cash demanded details of the number and location of condom vending machines. She followed that with questions about detainees accessing p-rnography online.

"Is the department aware of any instances where a detainee has accessed p-rnography, including child p-rnography?" Cash demanded of Departmental Secretary Andrew Metcalfe. Officials denied any knowledge of asylum seekers trying to access child p-rn.

Immigration Deputy Secretary Jackie Wilson told Cash: "I'm not aware personally of the child p-rnography. And because Serco, as I said, does its reporting on sites that are hit, they can actually block sites if it's identified that there's a frequent access to a certain site that's inappropriate."

Asked Cash: "What action is then taken against the detainee? Considering in our own culture, if you're at work and you access p-rn online, you're pretty much looking at dismissal."

Metcalfe replied: "These folks aren't at work, they're at home -- it's a home we provide for them."

Cash: "That's a very interesting distinction. A very interesting -- and I will consider pursuing that one further."

Metcalfe: "This is their home for the time being."

Cash: "Yes. Is there a difference between accessing unlawful child p-rnography and just surfing the net for p-rn at home?"

Metcalfe: "Well certainly Senator, we do not condone or permit any of that ... because simply it is contrary to law regardless of the place."


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