| 18.03,19. 08:00 AM |
One million people sign petition calling for Fraser Anning to leave parliament
Connolly cracked an egg over Senator Anning’s head on live television. Source: AP
A petition to remove Senator Fraser Anning from parliament is gaining traction online following his controversial comments surrounding the Christchurch terrorist attack.
The petition – which has gained more than 1,084,000 signatures as of Monday morning – has become the largest Change.org petition in Australia’s history.
Mr Anning has been widely condemned for blaming Muslim immigration for the racist attacks on two New Zealand mosques that claimed at least 50 lives on Friday.
He came under blistering criticism over tweets posted after the attacks, including one that said, “Does anyone still dispute the link between Muslim immigration and violence?”
“The real cause of the bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place,” he said in a later statement.
The petition addressed to Prime Minister Scott Morrison says there is “no place” for Anning’s views “in the government of our democratic and multicultural country”.
“We call on the Australian government to assist in demanding a resignation from this man who blames victims for their own violent deaths, and uses references to genocide to further his hateful agenda,” the page reads.
“There is no place in Australian government for Neo-Nazis. There is no place for bigotry. There is no place for hate speech.”
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern for the first time on Sunday joined the public condemnation of Senator Anning.
Asked by a journalist what she thought of his comments, she replied simply: “They’re a disgrace.”
Funds raised for ‘Egg Boy’
A GoFundMe page has also been started for the teen who cracked the egg over Mr Anning’s head.
The senator was at a speaking engagement at a venue in Roberna Street at Moorabbin.
While speaking to the media, the teen – identified online as Will Conolly – cracked on egg on the back of Senator Anning’s head.
Senator Anning lashed out by hitting the boy twice in the face before the teen was tackled to the ground by several men.
After video of the incident went viral online, a law firm offered to represent the 17-year-old in court free of charge. It’s unknown if that offer has been accepted.
The crowdfunding page, which had a goal of $2000, has raised more than $37,000 in just one day.
The creator of the fundraiser said Will has “committed to sending a majority of the money to the victims of the Christchurch terrorist attack”.
Scott Morrison on Sunday took the teenager’s side, telling reporters: “The full force of the law should be applied to Senator Anning.”
The teenager was arrested, but has since been released without charge.
Victoria Police said the incident is being actively investigated “in its entirety” including the actions of the 69-year-old man and others.