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He’s been called a troublemaker, dissident and downright pest but no one can argue former National party MP George Christensen hasn’t stuck to his guns in the face of a torrent of criticism.
The outspoken former government member announced recently that he was joining the ranks of Pauline Hanson’s One Nation in a bid to win a senate seat after originally announcing his resignation from politics.
Yahoo News Australia spoke to Mr Christensen about his move to One Nation, a party that many in the populist frame of politics consider to have little chance of securing seats in the coming Federal Election or making any real difference to the Australian political landscape.
But Mr Christensen, who has been most outspoken about the harsh measures imposed on Australians over the past two years in response to Covid-19, says One Nation is the “circuit breaker” to help restore the freedoms that many Australians once enjoyed.
'Keeping the bastards honest'
“I left the Liberal National Party because I feel the government has moved in the wrong direction on a lot of fronts, including the handling of the pandemic and the net zero push,” Mr Christensen said.
“I was asked by Senator Pauline Hanson, who understood my frustrations, to run on her senate ticket and, after looking at One Nation's policies and finding I furiously agreed with just about all of them, I accepted the offer to be part of her team.
“The role One Nation plays is like the old Democrats; that is, keeping the bastards honest. It also plays a role of dragging the government of the day to a common sense conservative position on things.
“The Nationals, being in Coalition with the Liberals, cannot play this role.”
'The big issues that really matter'
Mr Christensen, who was a member of the Queensland Liberal National party, which is actually a division of the Liberal party, said that the reception to his actions and move to One Nation “has been positive whether I've been in Mackay or even on the Gold Coast over Easter”.
As was his stance when in parliament, Mr Christensen is running for the senate on the platform of opposition to the “big issues that really matter to our nation”. He states these as: “the coming digital identity agenda, the influence of the World Economic Forum on our domestic politics, the influence of Communist China, religious freedom, big tech censorship and justice for those who have had their lives adversely affected by the pandemic restrictions and vaccine mandates”.
Australians to be worse off under Labor
Mr Christensen said he knew he would make a move in this direction due to his party’s “pandering to the left and its lack of action on restrictions on freedom”. Despite ridicule from former colleagues like Matt Canavan, who he still considers a “mate”, Mr Christensen was undeterred.
“I'm not getting into the personal attacks, I'm focusing on the issues,” Mr Christensen said.
“I think things are headed in the wrong direction which is why I've left. But [Australians] will be immensely worse under a Labor/Greens government. That's why I think there needs to be a circuit breaker for conservative voters.”
“That circuit breaker is Pauline Hanson's One Nation.”
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