John Pesutto says it’ll be up to the party room if Deeming is let back in

Victorian Liberal leader John Pesutto says it’ll be up to the Liberal party room to decide if Moira Deeming is allowed back into the party after her nine month suspension.

Pesutto was grilled by 7:30 host Sarah Ferguson on Monday evening after Deeming appeared to walk back assurances she’d reportedly given to the party room during a 2-hour meeting earlier in the day.

On Monday evening Deeming appeared to walk back her reported condemnation of the rally’s organisers with a post to social media stating the opposite of what Pesutto had told reporters earlier in the day. Appearing on 7.30 Pesutto was repeatedly asked if Deeming’s position would be reconsidered in light of her most recent comments.

“If the party room, when it reconsiders this matter, as it will need to do so over the course of the next nine months, if it sees evidence that there’s a difference between what we were assured in written and oral presentations to the party room, and what is being posted on social media, then yeah, there will be consequences with that.”

Presutto had pushed for the conservative MP to be thrown out of the Parliamentary team after she promoted and spoke at Kelly-Jay Keen’s ‘Let Women’s Speak’ rally in Melbourne just over a week ago. A large number of protesters outnumbered Keen’s supporters at the event, taking a stand against her anti-transgender views, but a Neo-Nazi group also attended making salutes and displaying an offensive banner.

The opposition leader had described Deeming’s position in the party as “untenable” saying she should have had the foresight to recognise that her involvement in the event may bring the party into disrepute.

After a two-hour meeting Deeming’s colleagues came to a compromise that will see her stripped of her position as the whip, and she’ll also be suspended from the party for nine months.

Pesutto said the choice to suspend Moira Deeming was the right choice, stressing as a leader he is committed to supporting diversity.

“I am determined to make diversity, inclusion, and a welcoming nature in the Liberal party a top priority for us. Anyone who cannot live up to that will not be given a platform within the party.

“I’ve made it clear during the last week, and at this meeting today that this is very important, this is top priority for me. Telling all Victorians that we are there for everybody, no matter what your sexual preference, your racial or ethnic background, your religious views – whatever they are, there is a place for you in the Liberal party and we can be a voice for you.”

OIP Staff

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