He could have been sending an email from his smart phone, but it wasn’t a good look.
Slipper ultimately fell on his sword the day before after details were revealed of texts sent to his advisor James Ashby, which denigrated women and insulted some individuals, were tabled in the Federal Court.
Opposition Leader Tony Abbott called for Slipper to be sacked for texts which included ‘vile anatomical references’.
Abbott said his former Liberal Party colleague, who’s wedding he attended as a friend, unfit for the post, and had a dig at Prime Minister Julia Gillard in the process.
The PM didn’t dispute the offensive nature of the texts but refused to dump Mr Slipper, who left the Liberals and became an independent before becoming Speaker this year.
Abbott’s rant about Slipper sparked Julia Gillard’s unrelenting spray at Abbott, calling him a misogynist and sexist and in no position to criticise another on these grounds. The international media loved it, but much of the Aussie press gallery has been more reserved in their appraisal of the 15-minute address.
Slipper has been out of the Speaker’s chair since April when sexual harassment claims against him were taken to court but his fill-in Anna Bourke has now taken over full time.
The court case is one of the reasons Gillard refused to axe the Speaker she put in the post, stating that parliament had no right to act as judge in the case.
The Opposition motion for his axing was beaten anyway with the votes of independents Craig Thomson, Tony Windsor and Rob Oakeshott, and Green Adam Bandt, going with the Government.
Slipper has since given an emotional apology over the private texts sent to his former staffer Ashby before he was appointed Speaker.
“A number of these text messages refer to women and nothing excuses their content,” Slipper said in a statement.
“I understand why people, particularly women, would be offended by these statements and I unreservedly apologise for them.”
Image via AAP