Former Prime Minister Scott Morrison will quit politics in February after more than 16 years in the federal parliament.
Australia’s 30th Prime Minister confirmed on Tuesday he will “leave parliament at the end of February”.
Scott Morrison, a Pentecostal Christian, led the Coalition to a surprise election win in 2019 followed by a walloping defeat in 2022 after his popularity plunged.
On Tuesday, he said he’s off to “take on new challenges in the global corporate sector and spend more time with my family”.
“I am also looking forward to being more active in my church community, outside the constraints of public office,” he said.
It’s difficult to pick which controversies and scandals were most damaging to Scott Morrison’s legacy.
But just one month into the top job, Prime Minister Morrison was already targeting LGBTQIA+ Australians.
In 2018, he posted his infamous “gender whisperers” tweet criticising support for trans youth. At that time he also claimed queer-inclusive sex ed in schools made his “skin curl”.
A few months later, he described state birth certificate reforms benefiting trans people as “ridiculous”.
Morrison angered survivors when he declared he had “no plans” to address the scourge of gay “conversion” practices.
But a few years later, he applauded legislation to exclude trans people from sport as “terrific”.
Scott Morrison ‘dog-whistled to ultra-conservatives’
As PM, Scott Morrison also pushed for the parliament to pass his administration’s doomed religious discrimination legislation.
But the government ultimately had to dump the bill when some of Morrison’s own MPs opposed it over its concerning impacts on LGBTQIA+ Australians.
During the 2022 election campaign, Scott Morrison was accused of “dog-whistling to ultra-conservatives” by supporting “brave” anti-trans legislation.
Morrison refused to dump Katherine Deves, his hand-picked candidate for the Sydney seat of Warringah, despite a truly sickening catalogue of transphobia online.
Prime Minister @ScottMorrisonMP has slammed supports for gender diverse kids in schools describing it as “gender whispering”. We are appalled at his lack of knowledge or compassion. His comments harm the young people this affects. We strongly condemn the views he has expressed. https://t.co/Um9Teu7Ryn
— Transcend Australia (@transcend_aust) September 5, 2018
I am glad he’ll resign never having implemented his Religious Discrimination Bill, which would have unnecessarily divided the community, and increased discrimination against women, LGBTQ people, people with disability & people from minority faiths. #auspol https://t.co/qh39FZnhOj
— Alastair Lawrie (@alawriedejesus) January 23, 2024
Scott Morrison’s resignation next month will spark a byelection in his southern Sydney seat of Cook.
In May, he’ll release a memoir Plans for Your Good – A Prime Minister’s Testimony of God’s Faithfulness.
The book, with a foreword written by Mike Pence, will reportedly reveal how Morrison’s Christian faith influenced his politics.
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