Pauline Hanson's One Nation is facing hurdles in its fight for WA.
Pauline Hanson's One Nation is facing hurdles in its fight for WA. MICK TSIKAS

Pauline Hanson: 'I was wrong about vaccinations, OK?'

PAULINE Hanson has been forced into damage control as she struggles with the fallout from One Nation's implosion with just days until the WA elections.

The divisive Senator had to backtrack on comments she made earlier this week about vaccinations and GST, and defend herself against ageism accusations after sacking two longtime One Nation members.

 

She also rubbished a former candidate's claims to news.com.au that she's only after "power and money" on television this morning.

Ms Hanson, who this week claimed there was a test to see if children were allergic to vaccines, conceded on Sunrise:

"I've heard a couple of doctors have said that there is no test. Yes, I do apologise. If that be the case, I am wrong, alright.

"I was of the opinion that I did read that was the case, umm, apparently it's not.

"Vaccinations have controlled a lot of diseases, I admit that ... I think it's been blown completely out of proportion, the whole issue. But as far as having tests done, OK, I admit I was wrong with that."

She also came a cropper over GST, having earlier in the week described her WA lieutenant Colin Tincknell as having "a senior moment" when he claimed she backed sharing Queensland GST funds with Western Australia.

It emerged this morning that Ms Hanson in fact did say that, in a January interview with 6PR broadcaster Gareth Parker. Ray Hadley replayed the interview on 2GB.

Asked if she would be interested in promoting Queensland sharing GST funds with WA, Hanson said on air, "'Course I will.

"No problem. What I've always said, equality.

"Let's do what's just and fair."


A PARTY IN MELTDOWN

One Nation is in chaos in WA where it faces an unfair dismissal case and allegations of discrimination and outright lies by a former candidate and officials, who have painted a picture of dirty tricks and bitter infighting.

The Queensland Senator this morning insisted she remained confident her party would win up to three seats in the upper house "and maybe a couple of seats in the lower house" on Saturday.

Ms Hansons laughed off claims by former candidate Ray Gould, who told news.com.au the Senator's campaign was nothing but a cash-grab.

"I get absolutely nothing out of it," she told Sunrise. "I can't believe it."

The One Nation leader said she was committed to "working for the people", adding: "It's a stupid statement and I'm glad to see the back of him anyway."

The party now faces legal action after Marye Louise Daniels, 79, told reporters she and her 87-year-old husband Ron McLean had been sacked as secretary and president of the WA Branch of One Nation for being "too old".

Ms Hanson denied the former party powerbrokers were sacked, saying their positions were only ever temporary.

"Ron and Marye have been friends of mine for 20 years. These people helped me and they encouraged me to stand in Western Australia," she said.

Ms Hanson said the party was initially being run out of the elderly couples' house, and when she told them it was time to get professional "they didn't seem to like it".

"I said Ron and Marye, it has to go to an office, to a professional office. We have to be professional now. Well, they didn't seem to like that, because they were losing control over it," she said.

In an interview with news.com.au, former One Nation candidate Ray Gould says he pulled out of the election race in WA at the last minute because of his feelings about party leader Hanson.

The 70-year-old bricklayer, who has now returned to his Labor roots, says he was drawn to the party because he believed it could make a difference in reducing the state's $40 billion debt, the highest nationwide.

 

Former One Nation candidate Ray Gould quit the election race last week.
Former One Nation candidate Ray Gould quit the election race last week.

Now the former candidate for Liberal-held Kalamunda says he believes Ms Hanson is only after one thing: publicity. "It's just power and money," he said.

Mr Gould told news.com.au he had thought Ms Hanson's language was "a bit rough, but she seemed pretty straight" but after One Nation's preferencing deal with the Liberals, he was appalled.

"She wants to be the watchdog of Australia politics, but it's all for money, no consideration for people. She threw us away like a dirty rag.

"It's a scam. The public are getting smashed.

"She'll say anything to get power. I know she had a tough time, but that's not the public's fault.

"You don't want her as a watchdog in politics, that's for sure."

Mr Gould said Ms Hanson and One Nation WA leader Mr Tincknell would say things they without knowing if they were true as "a ruse to get more votes". And he warned Ms Hanson could face a tough time winning over supporters in this election.

"In Queensland, she was treated like a movie star, but not in WA," he said.

 

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson.
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson.

Ms Hanson hit back at her former candidate after he left the party, calling him a "Labor stooge" as she flew to WA on Saturday for the final week of campaigning ahead of the election. "He has come across to One Nation as a disgruntled person," she said.

The firebrand party leader has been having image problems of late, with Ms Daniels telling reporters Ms Hanson and three men came into her Perth home at night "like an army" on February 22 to break the news she and her husband were being dropped after 20 years of loyal service and supporting the party with $100,000 of their own money.

Mr Gould said the couple had been "stabbed in the back."

In a statement to Sky News, Mr Tincknell also denied the accusations of ageism, saying: "We advised Ron we had a younger, more virile candidate who could take the position.

"His health's not good, he has trouble hearing, we had another younger candidate who could step forward."

The ALP was ahead of the LNP in a Galaxy poll taken this weekend by a wide margin of 54 to 46 per cent on a two-party preferred basis, but Premier Colin Barnett has said the Liberals are still in the game because of undecided voters. One Nation are on nine per cent.

Bill Shorten is expected to return to Perth for the campaign's final week but Malcolm Turnbull will stay away, after a recent visit flopped because he was seen to have backtracked on a promise to fix the GST system that short-changes WA.

The Prime Minister this week attacked Ms Hanson for her comments that all Australian Muslims should be treated with suspicion, and criticised as dangerous attempts to "demonise" the religion.

News Corp Australia

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