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What Morrison’s “exoneration” of Porter tells women

Prime Minister Scott Morrison today declared that he considers alleged rapist and federal Attorney General Christian Porter to be “an innocent man under our law.”

 

 

Christian Porter has not undergone any investigation under “our law.” Police have never interviewed him. By no stretch of the imagination can Morrison claim the Attorney General has been found to be an “innocent man” under “our law,” when the senior law maker has not engaged with the law at all on the matter of his alleged anal rape of Kate, in 1988.

NSW Police found that there was insufficient admissible evidence to pursue the case against Porter. That is, please note, admissible evidence.

Morrison claims he has not read the alleged victim’s statement. He does not know what Porter is alleged to have done, outside of a “briefing” from his staff. He claims he did not read the statement because he was not in the same place as the statement. Yes. You read that correctly. He did not read the statement because it was not in the same place as him.

 

 

Morrison has also refused to seek advice from the federal Solicitor General on the Porter matter, despite this being the obvious next step for a Prime Minister confronted with a situation such as this one.

Indeed, it appears Morrison has taken no legal advice at all (that he is willing to reveal) on how he should proceed with an allegation of violent anal rape, made against his Attorney General by a woman who took her own life. Morrison appears to be relying solely on Porter’s claim that “it never happened.”

Now, today, despite his wilful ignorance of the allegations, despite having sought no legal advice, he has declared Porter to be “an innocent man,” presumably because Porter says “it didn’t happen.” I can find no other explanation for the Prime Minister arriving at this conclusion.

 

 

What does this say to women in Australia?

  1. It says if we don’t get a complaint of rape or sexual assault to court, and the majority of us do not, the alleged rapist is an “innocent man.”
  2. It says that men who rape us will be perfectly safe if we die during the act or subsequent to it.
  3. It says that Porter’s alleged victim, Kate, must have been lying or mad.
  4. It says that any woman who is unable to get a case to court is lying.
  5. It says that men, following the example set by the Prime Minister of this country, do not need to bother acquainting themselves with our stories before they decide the alleged perpetrator is “innocent.”
  6. It says that Scott Morrison has set women back decades with his “exoneration” today of an alleged rapist, based on nothing more than the alleged rapist’s denial.
  7. It says that if Morrison exonerates Porter, he exonerates every alleged rapist who is not dealt with by the courts.
  8. It says that as of today, everything just got a whole lot more difficult and traumatic for women attempting to find justice after being raped or sexually assaulted.
  9. It tells rapists, all you have to do is say “it never happened.”
  10. It says, women, everything is stacked against you getting the criminal offence against you to court, and if you don’t, as most of us won’t, you’re a liar & your attacker is an “innocent man according to our law.”

 

 

It says, we should be very afraid of where Morrison is going with this, and note carefully who supports him.

This article was originally published on No Place For Sheep.

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26 comments

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  1. Henry Rodrigues

    The prime ministerial bastard is as guilty of subverting justice as the alleged rapist and the law enforcement goons.

  2. Harry Lime

    Narcissist,sociopath,member of an intellectually insulting aberration of christianity,friend and patron of QAnon conspiracy theorists,finds himself in a spot of bother.He finds himself within a hair’s breadth of being exposed to the “Quiet Australains”as the outrageous fraud that he is.Cornered like a sewer rat,his pronouncements are becoming increasingly strident and desperate.His overblown view of himself is disintergrating before his disbelieving eyes.A sad, sorry little man..Would fit comfortably in a list of the worst Caesars.

  3. Once was a liberal

    “It says, we should be very afraid of where Morrison is going with this, and note carefully who supports him.” We should indeed be afraid, because we know where Morrison is going. He’s there solely for his own ego, to line his own pockets to the greatest extent possible, to “look after his mates in the liberal party” and to leave the country a third world theocracy happy clapping its way towards the imaginary “rapture”.

    Yes! Let’s all be afraid as the religious managers, who, with all his new anti-freedom for non believers laws, happy clap their way to great riches.

    Better all lock your kids up, too.

  4. ozfenric

    We need to be careful with our terminology, as I note Scott Morrison is being exceedingly careful with his terminology. Porter is “an innocent man under our law”, and this is true. Porter, like all of us, is innocent until proven guilty. This says nothing about whether he did the deed or not; it is simply a matter of law.

    It is also true that someone who stands in the middle of the street and shoots somebody dead is “innocent under our law” until he has been taken to court and found guilty. In such a case we investigate, and prosecute, and take the steps required to prove the perpetrator’s guilt.

    It is, obviously, not politically convenient to investigate and prosecute and take any steps in the case of Christian Porter. It is possibly true that any investigation could not prove Porter’s guilt beyond reasonable doubt, or in any legally meaningful way; it is perhaps true that standing down the Attorney-General for an extended investigation would irreparably damage his standing and his career prospects, assets which are already probably quite badly damaged. An investigation could perhaps throw an unflattering light on Porter’s history and character.

    None of which materially affects the fact that he remains “an innocent man” and Morrison chooses, for political reasons as much as anything else, not to pursue the matter further. As the AIMN aspires to be a respectable news platform, its writers and commenters ought, I suspect, to be careful before throwing accusations of guilt, for fear of being accused of defamation.

  5. Kaye Lee

    Porter cannot be declared guilty or innocent by anyone. The question is, is he a fit and proper person to hold the position he holds? That question extends beyond the historical rape allegation.

  6. Carol Taylor

    I would say that Porter is neither guilty nor innocent, he is however a person accused of the crime. He will remain accused until found innocent. It was therefore inappropriate of Morrison to deem an accused person ‘innocent’ until all the evidence has been assessed.

  7. Michael Taylor

    oz, our writers know better than to accuse a person of a crime who has not been convicted of that crime. This article has not laid that accusation.

    We also like to think that our commenters are aware of the risks of making false accusations. If they do make an accusation, that accusation is removed by our moderators. We take these things seriously.

  8. Kerri

    Is it just me or does this all sound a bit like when Trump defended Putin claiming “he says he didn’t do it and I believe him!”?
    And once it has been established whether Porter is a fit and proper person to be Attorney General, the logical next step is to try to establish whether an elected representative of the people is a fit and proper person to remain Prime Minister after attempting to quash an investigation simply on the words of a mate?

  9. andy56

    Sorry if i sounded a little ambivalent in previous posts but i have change my standing. It seems Porter consulted his lawyer 4 months ago. So for somebody who ” doesnt know :” what the accusations are, why did he plan so far ahead? Obviously some of us can join the dots, HE IS Guilty. Facts ? what are they? We can make our own alternative facts due to a cone of silence around this government. This not only about justice, its about being seen to support it, not hide the evidence. Morrison hasnt read the 30page document yet says Porter is Innocent. Yet Morrison also said we should listen to women. Which is it? It Seems to me he wants it both ways, what a fine christian he is. Whats worse, Janine is now silent on putting morrison on the right track. This faustian pact is crumbling before our eyes. The woman who took her life, has now given it to them right between the eyes.

  10. Matters Not

    Interesting development in the US where Smartmatic, (a provider of election technology) is suing the Murdoch’s organisation (Fox specifically) for $2.7 billion in damages re assertions made about vote rigging In response, Fox immediately sacked Lou Dobbs and, generally speaking, is running for cover. The defamation dollars involved are mind blowing.

    That development also affects other publishers. Mark Zuckerberg, for example, argues he is NOT a publisher – just a provider of a platform. Hoping that defamation actions will therefore not apply to him. Time will tell. But Zuckerberg is sticking to his story – mindful of what is at stake. He is not a publisher.

    On this site, claims are made that simply wouldn’t get a run in the MSM. For example, one recent commentator provided a list of nine names who were supposedly, not only Cabinet Ministers, but also Evangelical members of Hillsong. Of the nine politicians named, only two were actually in the Cabinet. And overstating another’s political importance is hardly defamatory.

    Nevertheless, to claim that Celia Hammond, for example, formerly Vice-Chancellor of WA’s Notre Dame University (a very Catholic institution) is also a member of Morrison’s Hillsong putsch is not only very wide of the mark but might be defamatory. Certainly, if it was an assertion advanced in the MSM a retraction would rapidly be in the offing.

    Then came Senator James Paterson who was also named as being in the Cabinet as well as being an evangelical member of Hillsong. That Paterson is a self-declared atheist seemed to be beyond commentator’s ken. Defamatory? Given the whole scheme of things, this site is not widely read so action is unlikely. But who knows.

    Not a lawyer myself, but did employ a few in a past life and was also responsible for publishing a monthly journal, so I was wondering how a site like this girds its legal lions? Does one take out insurance? Who is the publisher? Or is is this site just a platform? And if so, is there a legal opinion to that effect? So many questions that might be asked.

    And comments?

  11. Kronomex

    The Rule of Law? Bah! Who needs the Rule of Law when we have the Rule of Liberal. Leader Scummo has now basically set himself up as Judge, Jury and Final Arbiter. To paraphrase a line from a certain movie: “HE IS THE LAW.” and that is a scary thought.

  12. Michael Taylor

    MN, in order to be defamed you have to prove detriment. Calling someone a Protestant, for example, when they might be a Catholic, that person would have to prove that this has been detrimental to them in some way, such as having affected their career prospects.

    Actors who have sued for defamation, as an example, their argument has been that, say, tabloid gossip has affected their career prospects and their earnings.

    In a nutshell, hurt feelings do count but a good portion of any defamation case relates to a detriment in multiple ways. Someone (on another site) threatened to sue me because I said unkind things about Tony Abbott. Oh how I laughed.

    Laws on defamation are one of the most misunderstood of all laws.

  13. Zathras

    Morrison may be thinking that, like Robodebt and all the other scandals in which he’s been involved, this one will somehow be forgotten before the next election.

    By avoiding an enquiry that may somehow clear him, Porter will forever be tagged with the name “alleged rapist Christian Porter”, especially by women voters.

    On the other hand if public pressure continues and Porter finally abandons his political aspirations and resigns that would result in a bi-election which will likely see the end of the Morrison government majority.

    Will Morrison back down like he did on the calls for Commissions into Banking and Aged Care?

    Throw the end of Jobkeeper and Jobseeker supplements and he’s in a lose-lose situation.

  14. Bruce White

    Kaye Lee makes a good point about guilt and innocence.
    What I would say is that Porter may be Not Guilty in law.
    But he can never be regarded as innocent.
    Personally, I think that he did it.But that counts for naught.
    The issue for Porter I think, other than the rape allegations, is whether he is a fit and proper person to be federal Attorney General.
    I have said on a number of occassionsand at different times in the past that other federal ministers have been not a fit and proper person to be eg minister for immigration (Dutton,Morrison), minister for home affairs (Dutton),minister for government services (Robert, Tudge),minister for communications (Fletcher), and others, the list goes on.
    I remember back in the 80s when Bondy bought Kerry Packers 9 Network Queensland interests. Later on, he had to sell it (because he was deemed by the then Australian Broadcasting Tribunal(ABT) to be not a fit and proper person to hold a television broadcasters licence. He had given a considerable sling to The Bjelke Petersen Foundation as the price to ‘do business in Quennsland’).
    Bondy was angry about that and said he would fight it.But to no avail.
    Packer bought it back of him for ‘a third of what he paid Packer for it’.
    Packer gloated about that of course.
    The point of this is to illustrate that the Attorney Generals position as a minister goes to character.
    The Attorney General needs to be ‘a fit and proper person’ and Porters character indicates from the things that he has done in the past over his whole adult life disqualify him from that summation.
    Guilty and Not Guilty are issues of law.
    Character is an issue of integrity,ethics,altruism, treatment of others (eg Collaery), being beyond reproach.
    A fit and proper person.
    As someone said ‘not being a bastard and hence being able to be given the benefit of the doubt.’
    The final issue (most important) is the victim ( family and friends) being acknowledged for a sense of justice, a life lived not in vain.

  15. Kaye Lee

    Meanwhile….

    The chief executive of MinterEllison has reportedly stepped down, after a furore erupted about the law firm representing Christian Porter.

    Annette Kimmitt will leave the firm in coming months, the Australian Financial Review reported, after the board told her that her position was no longer tenable after a meeting on Tuesday.

    Kimmitt committed no crime but has lost her job.

    As I mentioned on David Tyler’s article, Porter’s seat of Pearce may well cease to exist when the new electoral boundaries in WA are drawn up. Celia Hammond is currently the member for Curtin, Julie Bishop’s old seat that Porter wanted. Hammond is also the MP who got the dossier first and alerted the PM. Would be tough to kick her our for Porter. Interesting times.

  16. Miles F Pharaweigh

    When Tim Carmody was appointed to the supreme court bench in Queensland by Jarrod Bleije during the reign of Campbell Newman,his acceptance of the role proved in one fell swoop, that he was not fit for the role, since a person who is offered such a role, if fit, would of their own volition refuse the role if they weren’t.

    Porter proves he is unfit to sit as attorney general by not standing aside and waiting for a thorough investigation.

    In supporting Porter, Morrison proves that he, similarly, is not fir to hold office.

    My horror is that country voters will still vote for him, such is their electoral stupidity.

  17. Matters Not

    Not sure that Annette Kimmitt jumped or was pushed (by the Board) because to date, no one will go on the record. In many ways she was an outsider, having come from Ernst and Young – a firm with its eyes fixed squarely on the bottom line and not known for its commitment to principles. Apart from the dollar of course. And these days, more and more women are engaging in legal action. Indeed, it’s a growth industry.

    While legal firms don’t have to take all cases on offer, most legal firms (and lawyers, broadly defined) subscribe to the view that any accused is entitled to the best ‘defence’ possible. Putting it another way – A lawyer’s job is not to know or determine guilt. That’s for the Court to decide.

    MT, as for defamation and your reference to having affected career prospects. Again that’s a decision to be made by a Court and involves a fair dose of speculation. Granted, this site is not widely read (in the whole scheme of things) and perhaps, more importantly. very few, if any, would believe that a Catholic Vice-Chancellor (Celia Hammond) was part of a Morrison/Hillsong Cabinet takeover. In short, plausibility seems in very short supply. But who knows what reality a skilled silk can construct. And clearly some believe what they want to believe.

    Miles F Pharaweigh – your argument(s) appears circular.

  18. Matters Not

    From today’s Crikey:.

    chief executive Annette Kimmitt has left the law firm after its board decided “her services were no longer required”, following news she emailed staff last Wednesday to say that taking on Christian Porter as a client had “triggered hurt” for her and to apologise for “causing hurt” to employees.

    In a response to that email, firm partner Peter Bartlett had told staff he had been thanked personally by the Prime Minister’s Office for advising Porter on historical rape claims and that Scott Morrison and the attorney-general “are the leaders of one of the firm’s largest clients”.

    As The Age reported on Tuesday, MinterEllison is currently working on $93 million of government contracts, with some staff reportedly concerned their handling of the allegations, which Porter denies, could threaten this relationship.

    Firm chairman David O’Brien reportedly told partners just before 10pm last night that Kimmitt had worked her last day after they had “mutually agreed” on her departure; the AFR however had earlier yesterday reported on Tuesday’s decisive board meeting, when sources initially believed there would be no announcement for about two months so that the firm was not seen to be making a “knee-jerk reaction”.

    Yep those dollars win the day.

  19. Vikingduk

    The example being set by the liar from the shire and his criminal cohorts continues a pattern of contempt for the law as displayed by several of his cohort who needed to be threatened with contempt of court before they retracted/apologised for their arrogant behaviour. As far as I can tell, this displays fascist behaviour by saying we, this current crime syndicate, are above all laws, above any criticism, above honesty (or is that below), against any transparency.

    Morals, who needs em. Don’t accept the question, refuse to listen to the questioner, suspend parliament, reduce the frequency of sitting days and trash democracy.

    All aided and abetted by a fake, lying hypocrite, smirking his fucking smirk, a smirk that needs rubbing in dogshit, the supreme conman, the announcer in chief. But wait, look over there, $1.2 billion, 800,000 cheap airline tickets. Jeez, that morrison, what a good bloke, says the most corrupt media in the known universe (excuse my hyperbole).

    Inoculations behind schedule, nah mate, blame the states, it’ll happen one of these days. What was it? 4 million vaccinated by April? Any comment, scotty? Had time to read the victim’s account? Have you occupied the same space as this account? Is this plausible deniability in action? If you haven’t read, scotty, why not? Any comment, scotty? Jen been helping out with the decision making? Are you a bullying bastard at home, scotty? Does jen know to mind her words. Accept your decisions completely, no dissent? Do the girls know you are the absolute boss, what you say goes?

    Yet the corruption continues enabled enthusiastically by one of the most biased, lying, traitorous MSM on the planet. Yes, watch who support these travesties, remember them well.

  20. Miles F Pharaweigh

    MN you are of course correct.

    The whole appointment was counter to the way the law works, and ended up being circular since the judicial fraternity a) refused to attend his induction onto the bench as chief, b) spent a lot of time rejecting his judgements and finally c) refused to sit with him in tribunals such as appeals.

    Carmody was eventually moved to QCAT and resigned from the judiciary in 2019.

    His is likely to be the shortest tenure on any bench in Australian legal history, as it lasted 53 weeks.

    A short bio of Carmody

  21. Vikingduk

    Yep, sickenly interesting. Didn’t age well at all, did it? The liar from the shire in full flight. Weasel words from #ScottyTheRapistProtector. Only alleged, of course.

  22. Pete Petrass

    Speaking of rapists,has anyone heard anything about the Brittany Higgins rapist??? Is he still in the private hospital, have the cops interviewed him, has he left the country, or whatever???

  23. jamie

    HEY THERE OZFENRIC!!!

    is u p bartletts defam shoeshine boy?

  24. New England Cocky

    @Carol Taylor: That is a moot point; ”Does a judgment of ‘Not guilty, mi lord” by the Prim Monster carry the same legal weight as a judgment from a legitimate Australian Court of Law? Certainly as no evidence was heard then there can be no protection for the alleged rapist Porter under either the Federal or NSW Rule against Double Jeopardy. So does the Scummo ”statement of innocence” Royal Dispensation hold any judicial weight?

    Perhaps the optimal solution is for Scummo to hold a Judicial Inquiry under a senior likely retired Supreme Court or High Court judge to determine what happened on the balance of probabilities, while Porter stands down from the high legal office of Attorney General.

  25. Carol Taylor

    NEC, the opinion of PM Morrison carries no more legal weight than that of my cat. In fact, same as Turnbull and his ‘thus it shall be found’ Morrison’s statement could be seen as interference with due process. Indeed, it reeks of ‘royal dispensation’ to deem someone ‘innocent’ thereby usurping the role of the Court. I suspect the fact that Porter has taken indefinite leave (along with the other half of Morrison’s ministers) suggests that there might be more to come. What Porter/Morrison don’t want I suspect is that the alleged victim’s testimony being given any airtime and are therefore doing their best to avoid an enquiry – cheap flights to Merimbula anyone?

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