Former One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has launched a bid for an Upper House seat in the New South Wales state election.
She has moved to Corlette, on the state’s North Coast, and is running as part of a group of 16 independents in the March 26 poll.
New South Wales Premier, Kristina Keneally, says Labor will not direct preferences to Ms Hanson under any circumstances.
Ms Keneally says her party condemns Ms Hanson’s divisive approach.
“We completely condemn the sort of racist policies that she promotes,” she said.
Don’t hurt your head on the glass ceiling, Ms Keneally!
“It’s remarkable that in 2011 the Premier, a leader of this state, has to stand up and defend the values of multiculturalism, of diversity, but indeed with someone like Ms Hanson entering the political race, I make clear that that’s precisely what I’ll do.
You’ll be gone soon, along with your delusions, Keneally!
“New South Wales is a wonderful place. It’s a wonderful place because people from over 200 countries have come here and made this their home.
“Our diversity is amongst our greatest strength and I’ll stand up and defend that, very much so.”
We beg to differ. Diversity divides us. Unity makes us strong, ms Keneally!
The NSW Liberal Party has also said it would offer no preferences to Ms Hanson.
But Ms Hanson has told Fairfax Radio Network, “I’m not racist.”
No-one can ever comment or make a comment on any racist statement I have ever said,” she said on Wednesday.
“I have … as an Australian … a right to question immigration and multiculturalism, which I don’t believe is helping our country.
“I believe in people coming here, assimilating, becoming Australians and be proud of this country and abide by the laws of the land.
“I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.”
Ms Hanson said the major political parties feared her. Â (They certainly do.)
“Why? Because they know I’ve always spoken out, I expose them for what they are,” she said.
“They want to hold onto their power and the positions.
“It is in the people’s interest of NSW to ensure that I am on the floor of NSW.”
Ms Hanson is to stand for an upper house seat with a group of 16 independents but conceded it would be a “battle” to get elected.
Ms Hanson said she had been thinking about making a political comeback since last year, with voters urging her to stand.
Parliamentary accountability and law and order reforms would be high on her agenda.
“Something I’d like to consider and put to the government is the separation of powers of the police force to the parliament,” she said.
“I don’t think the police force should be controlled by a minister of police.
“They could look at separating them. So they (police) can get on and do their job.”
She also said she was “completely against” Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s carbon tax.
On the subject of Ms Keneally, Ms Hanson said, “I think she’s a very nice lady but she doesn’t know what she’s talking about.”
“Diversity’ Â news from Oz:
Bear in mind that this is a threat that’s been almost entirely imported over the past 30 years, yet restrictions on further such imports are considered too rude for serious debate: