They say we get the government we deserve but should we tolerate a Member of Parliament authorizing credit card payments for prostitutes? Incredible as it may sound, it actually happened in 2005 when Labor backbencher Craig Thomson was secretary of the Health Services Union. He’s admitted he authorized the payments but denies it was him who visited the escort agency. He insists his signature had been forged on credit card receipts and that another man (who he refused to name) had repaid $15,000 to the union.
If that isn’t bad enough Mr Thomson decided to sue Fairfax newspapers for defamation after they published these shocking allegations against him but he needed $90,000 to save him from bankruptcy. As a bankrupt, he would automatically lose his central NSW seat of Dobell and if that happened, the Gillard government would fall. So the Labor Party paid the debt for him.
But his troubles don't end there, he’s also been accused of using the union credit card to bankroll his election campaign to the tune of $100,000. And finally, last weekend he was accused of being a bully and reducing a female charity worker to tears at a rally on the central coast. Tony Abbott surely got it right when he said “This has got trouble written all over it.”
But the Opposition Leader refused to agree that Thomson should be sacked when asked if he would sack a Liberal MP facing similar allegations. Asked why the issue was even being tolerated, Mr Abbott said it was a question for the Prime Minister who has said on two occasions that he has her full confidence. It seems that even this disgraceful behaviour will be tolerated simply because she needs him to survive.