Minns says Latham trying to bring ‘spiteful’ Trump-style politics to NSW

NSW election 2023

Premier Chris Minns wants a bipartisan agreement to block One Nation’s NSW leader Mark Latham from having any additional powers in the new parliament after the political firebrand doubled down on his homophobic slur.

Latham on Thursday morning tweeted a highly graphic and offensive comment aimed at Sydney independent MP Alex Greenwich, who is gay, prompting the party’s figurehead Pauline Hanson to demand Latham apologise.

Mark Latham walking dogs near his home on Saturday,Credit:Dean Sewell

Instead, after maintaining his silence for 24 hours, Latham tweeted “never apologise, never explain” before issuing a statement to News Ltd in which he said: “Sometimes in public life when you throw out insults they come back at you harder and truer … So boo-hoo Alex Greenwich.”

Speaking on Sky News on Sunday morning, Minns said his government would not support Latham chairing any upper house committee and urged the opposition to follow his lead.

“We are not going to work with him, we are not going to support any claim by him to chair a committee in the Legislative Council,” Minns said.

“I’m not sure who is going to lead the Liberal Party in the next few months, but I’d call on their organisation to make a similar commitment because the commentary he made in relation to the independent member for Sydney Alex Greenwich were vile and obviously hugely disrespectful.”

NSW Premier Chris Minns and One Nation NSW leader Mark Latham.Credit:Dominic Lorrimer, Getty Images

Minns said Latham was trying to import a “US-style, Trump-style approach to politics in NSW” but without the same success.

“In fact, One Nation is likely to go backwards as a result of the election result, so we are going to make sure there is an unambiguous and unanimous approach from the opposition against this kind of commentary,” Minns said.

“He’s been condemned from nearly every political party in the state and rightly so. I think he has shown himself to be quite spiteful.”

The former federal Labor leader made the comments in response to a Herald article in which Greenwich called Latham “a disgusting human being”. The article was about LGBTQI protesters who were targeted outside a candidates’ forum which Latham addressed during the election campaign.

This masthead has chosen not to publish the words contained in Latham’s tweet.

In a video message posted to Facebook late on Thursday, a visibly angry Hanson said she had tried to call and text Latham “to no avail”.

“I want you to know that I don’t condone them [the comments] and neither do my members of parliament or party associates,” Hanson told her supporters.

“I think they are disgusting … and I have clearly sent a text message to him telling him my views and also I’ve asked for him to give the people an apology.”

Latham will be re-elected to the upper house after he resigned his spot to lead the One Nation ticket. However, the party will not get a second seat as it had hoped.

Labor-turned-One Nation candidate Tania Mihailuk will fill the casual vacancy created by Latham’s resignation, which will see the party with three MPs in the upper house.

Latham has not responded to the Herald’s request for comment.

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