Gaynor no more with Katter’s Party
The controversial political career of Bernard Gaynor seems to have been short-lived with the one-time potential Katter’s Australia Party (KAP) Senate candidate for Queensland today announcing his resignation from the party.
The former Iraq War veteran came to prominence late last month after he defended bigoted comments made by Tess Corbett – another KAP candidate who was planning to contest the federal seat of Wannon in Victoria – after she compared gay people to paedophiles.
“I wouldn’t let a gay person teach my children and I am not afraid to say it,” Gaynor said at the time.
“Furthermore, considering both Tony Abbott and Julia Gillard oppose gay marriage it makes perfect sense that they would also be uncomfortable with teachers promoting a lifestyle that has serious negative health consequences and is opposed to the values of the majority of Australians.”
The comments received national media attention and the ensuing growing political pressure on KAP resulted in Corbett standing aside and the party suspending Gaynor.
After a month fighting a seemingly losing battle with the party’s leadership, Gaynor, a practising Catholic and anti-abortionist, said party leader Bob Katter’s silence on the issue of abortion this week had finally forced his hand as he had “failed to live up to the values” of the party.
“As every abortion takes the life of a child, the party cannot be silent on this issue,” Gaynor wrote on his personal website today.
“It must defend life, especially when called upon to do so in the media and by like-minded parliamentary colleagues.”
Gaynor (pictured) had also grown increasingly irate that Katter had earlier this month refused to disendorse ACT Senate candidate, Stephen Bailey, after he publicly stated his support for marriage equality which Gaynor said went against the party’s own core principles which declare marriage is a between a man and a woman.
“Katter’s Australian Party has a serious problem in that many of its federal election candidates privately support gay marriage or civil unions,” he wrote.
“Because Bob Katter refused to listen to my warnings last year over the values of certain candidates, he is stuck with a senate team campaigning for gay marriage under his family name.”
Yesterday, Katter was forced to angrily deny his party was an “extremist” group after he refused to state his and the party’s position on abortion.
“We are sick and tired of you people trying to paint us as some sort of extremist organisation,” Katter told AAP.
“You’re just trying to do to us what you did to Pauline Hanson.
“We spend none of our time talking about any of these things, and that's all you ever talk about.”
It was thought Gaynor may have had his membership with the party scrapped last week but a meeting of the KAP national executive last Friday decided against it.
Having only formed in June 2011, KAP has already been at the centre of a string of homophobic incidents and anti-gay controversies; including widespread furore both in Australia and overseas after it screened a bigoted television ad during last year’s Queensland state election that depicted gay men as sexual predators who liked to dress in skirts.