A branch stacking scandal involving Scott Morrison’s key ally, right-hand man in the federal parliament and Hillsong Church member Alex Hawke MP is finally going to be investigated after the Liberal Party have spent the last 2 years trying to sweep it under the carpet.
It was reported last Sunday (5/7/20) that a former NSW ICAC investigator has been appointed to lead an inquiry into allegations that Alex Hawke altered minutes of a branch meeting which should have shown that 10 new members, who were in a competing faction to Alex Hawke, were refused voting rights.
Mr Hawke is said to deny the allegations, but the inquiry was only set up after some of the 10 people who were denied their voting rights threatened legal action which is not a good look for the Liberal Party and Alex Hawke. (Click here to read more)
Branch stacking usually refers to adding false members to a political party but in this case, it was an attempt to block members joining the Liberal Party because they were in an opposing faction to Alex Hawke.
What is also disturbing about the inquiry is that Rupert Murdoch’s The Sydney Telegraph and Sky News reported it has an “EXCLUSIVE” last Sunday the day after the by-election in Eden Monaro which was a close election with less than 1000 votes in it. How long had Murdoch’s media been sitting on the story?
One of the key issues that the Liberal Party pushed in Eden Monaro was Labor Party corruption which they referenced the recent branch stacking scandal in Victoria as an example of Labor’s corruption. While Scott Morrison and the Liberal’s were promoting Labor Party branch stacking as a reason that Eden-Monaro voters should not vote for the Labor Party at the same time Scott Morrison and the Liberals, with the help of Murdoch’s media, were concealing from voters their own branch stacking scandal.
Also last Sunday, the day after the election, the SMH published a story extremely damaging to Scott Morrison and the Liberal Party titled “Morrison ditched Turnbull-era plans for greater transparency in political lobbying” which starts off:
“One of the Morrison government’s first acts was to quietly kill off Malcolm Turnbull’s plan for greater transparency about how lobbyists interact with the federal government, leaving in place a system widely regarded as ineffective and described as “light touch” by auditors.” (Click here to read more)
The SMH is owned by Nine Entertainment whose chairman is former federal treasurer and Liberal Party member Peter Costello who also happens to be a close political advisor to Scott Morrison which might explain why they held the story until the day after the election.
It’s also interesting that Nine Entertainment’s Sixty Minutes and the SMH were happy to run a story two weeks before the Eden Monaro by-election on the Labor Party’s branch stacking scandal in Victoria. Whenever a public interest story is ready to be published it should be, but Nine and the SMH received criticism from Labor Party supporters for publishing it 2 weeks before the election and then Nine clearly holds up the “Morrison ditched Turnbull-era plans for greater transparency in political lobbying” story until a day after the election.
Nine Entertainment is starting to look more and more like the Murdoch media.
The article I published last week titled “Rupert Murdoch and David McBride etc. What Australian media fail to report” dealt with public interest stories the old media were failing to report and as part of the article I raised two stories that should have been published before the Eden Monaro election. But the media manipulation was worse than I thought as the day after the election the above Liberal Party / Alex Hawke branch stacking storey appeared in the Murdoch media and the above Scott Morrison – lobbyist – lack of transparency article appeared in the SMH.
If both the Murdoch media and Nine Entertainment had of run the above stories before the Eden Monaro by-election like they should have it would have cost the Liberal Party a lot of votes and that is why they held the stories up until the day after the election. And the old media and their journalists wonder why they get bagged and ridiculed on social media. Next time you see an old media journalist having a whinge about how they don’t get the respect they believe they deserve to get send them the link to this article.
The good news is the old media companies are all on the back foot in a major way and they won’t survive because they no longer keep governments to account like they are meant to.
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Categories: Prime Minister Scott Morrison