Michael Sukkar

Labor’s Tanya Plibersek calls out misogynistic attack by the Liberal’s Michael Sukkar against Liberal Senator Jane Hume. Why didn’t the Liberals sort it out?

In May 2018 Liberal Senator Jane Hume published a post on Facebook about the issues she faced as a single mother with 3 children while working as an MP and Liberal MP Michael Sukkar sent some misogynistic texts in a Liberal Party group attacking Senator Hume. The texts were leaked to Sixty Minutes and broadcast on their show a few weeks ago which led to the dynamite question where Labor’s Tanya Plibersek asked Michael Sukkar in parliament on Monday (22/11/21) to explain himself.

The background

Jane Hume wrote in 2018:

“The problem is, while I am a willing volunteer to this life on the front line, my kids are conscripts. They will always be passengers on my roller coaster,” she wrote. “There is no such thing as superwoman. We can’t do it all. Something’s got to give.” (Click here to read more)

The below texts were leaked to 60 Minutes and published on their show on the 7th of November 2021 as part of their story on Michael Sukkar which Mr Sukkar apologised a few days later to Senator Jane Hume. Mr Sukkar commented on Jane Hume’s post in a group text with some Victorian factional allies as per below.

Someone else responded back to Michael Sukkar as per below:

The above is the background to video below where Labor’s Tanya Plibersek asked Michael Sukkar in parliament on Monday (22/11/21) to explain his comments.

The reason I regard the question as dynamite is that it is almost certain that Tanya Plibersek had Jane Hume’s permission and endorsement to ask the question in parliament otherwise Plibersek would not have asked the question in case it backfired and Jane Hume complained the matter had already been dealt with.

But that didn’t happen so what occurred in parliament on Monday was that 2 women, and possibly others, from opposite sides of politics worked together to send a loud message to all federal politicians that sexist comments won’t be tolerated. It must have been hugely embarrassing for Michael Sukkar although he has been under a cloud of corruption for months in the media which would be just as embarrassing, so he is probably used to it.

Mr Sukkar did seem prepared for the question, and he was possibly tipped off it was going to be asked and it’s worth noting he didn’t directly apologise for what he said but instead said the texts were incorrect and he regretted they were made public.

I watched parliament live and my first reaction to the above video was who is the Senator Hume in the Labor Party that Tanya Plibersek is sticking up for. But a quick internet search told me the Senator Hume was a Liberal Party member which blew me away because why hadn’t the Liberal Party dealt with the matter.

When Michael Sukkar stood up to respond he should have been is a position to say the Prime Minister or the Liberal Party had dealt with the issue or something along those lines, but he didn’t which means they must have done nothing. And it was obvious to me that Jane Hume must not have been happy with the original response and apology from Michael Sukkar a few weeks ago.

How Scott Morrison and the Liberal Party have treated women will be an election issue with high profile females such as Brittany Higgins and Australian of The Year Grace Tame in recent times publicly criticising Scott Morrison. But for the Liberal Party to have one of their own members work with Labor’s Tanya Plibersek on the floor of parliament to shine a light on the Liberal’s poor treatment of women is a whole new ball game.

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11 replies »

  1. Frankly, as a woman of advanced years, I think women have become a precious bunch of touchy, ridiculous creatures. Poor men have to be aware of every word they utter and every gesture they make. They can’t even use terms of endearment safely. “We” did need a stronger stance in the world but have gone too far. Feminity is sadly becoming a thing of the past. (Even the word “feminity” was challenged by spell check and auto-corrected to “feminist” OMG!)

    • Femininity!

      Sukkar’s actions were definitely not those of a gentleman and certainly not becoming of an MP, whether the subject was male or female. But so much worse because she was female.

    • It only surfaces here because the male cited in this article is still treating women as inferior as you can see very well by the quoted text messages. Women are hardly treated as equals in Morrison’s government. Nor do they understand that female politicians are still by and large having to care for the kids while working as well.

      “Poor men have to be aware of every word they utter and every gesture they make.”

      Replace ‘men’ in this sentence for ‘women’ and that’s how it has been for women for centuries, in some cases nothing has changed today.

      Women still do the bulk of the child minding, the cooking and the cleaning, and still work in a job to continue their careers as well. Their incomes are measurably lower than the wages of men, they are less numerous in management positions, and one or more die each week from domestic violence. Evidence from police records also shows they are often taken to be less honest than men when reporting such things as rape. Inquiries in some cases almost shut before they are opened.

      I think Morrison’ s government reeks of male dominance and patriarchy and I find it appalling how he has dealt with such things as the Brittany Higgins matter with the alleged rape event taking place three years ago now. And what has come of it? A myriad of confusing inquiries and reports that have gotten nowhere so far. The trial of alleged rapist Lehrman pushed off now until June, well after any election. Even Liberal Party women have agreed themselves that women are not treated the same in the party.

      Having recently watched “They’re a Weird Mob” again, a film from the 1960s after a book written in the 1950s where the ending finishes with a song, I think in some cases the many of the words still hold true:

      “‘Cause it’s a manʼs country sweetheart
      Where a woman can never win
      Yes, it’s a manʼs country sweetheart
      Where the women love the fighting
      They know that theyʼre gonna give in.”

      ( By R. Devereaux )

      Sure some women are getting the upper end, and many modern men help out more, even some are stay at home fathers, but there is still a long way to go in this country for all women to be treated as equals, and the current government is not helping in the least. I mean Scott Morrison’s wife had to explain to him why what happened to Higgins was bad by referring to his two daughters.

      It ought to have been obvious for him in the first place.

      • Sukkar was wrong but so was Jane Hume. She has children but they are no excuse for her “burden” of being an MP…!! Resign Jane and attend to your kids and homelife.

    • No wonder your spellchecker tried to correct “feminity”. There is no such word. Did you mean “femininity”?

      I too am “a woman of advanced years” and I totally disagree with all you say.

    • You’re no better than that scum Sukkar. I’m no Liberal voter, but she spoke about the difficulties single parents working full time are faced with. There’s no partner at home to be there for their children after school and nobody at home for school holidays. If they have family support, they’re lucky. Childcare is horrendously expensive. Femininity is just another word for oppression.

  2. Tanya Plibesek has started a good TikTok account with commentary on politics, and answering questions. Interesting that she is now taking a higher profile.

  3. I’m a ‘poor man’, also of advanced years, and have been married to a stridently feminist woman for almost 30 years. I am aware of my every word and gesture. However, there’s no mismatch between what I think and feel and what comes out of my mouth. What’s your issue, Janelise? Obviously there are biological differences between men and women, but we’re all citizens entitled to respect. Grubs like Sukkar (and that’s definitely not disrespectful as he’s hardly human) harbour the view that they have divine rights as males as laid down in biblical scriptures and only mouth platitudes towards ‘womenkind’ when they have to. Femininity is a thing of the past – women are allowed to wear trousers now, even when they’re doing the ironing. Anyway, Janelise, I suspect you’re really a troll.

    • Rob, I’ve been waiting hours for Janelise to reply to your views as to her being a troll. For you to refer to Sukkar as a grub is in reality slander, especially when you bolt it home with “that’s definitely not disrespectful as he is hardly human”. I respect the views of both Janelise and yourself and fall somewhere in the middle, but Janeline did not resort to base name calling, troll or not. If you are out there Janeline, I apologise on Rob’s behalf.

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