LNP candidate’s ‘appalling’ Berlin Wall border comments

 

 

 

A high-profile Gold Coast LNP candidate has come under fire for likening Queensland border closures to the Berlin Wall.

In a since-deleted Facebook post, Gaven candidate Kirsten Jackson compared the separation of East and West Berlin to the Queensland and New South Wales border closure.

The Berlin Wall, which fell in 1989, was constructed to stem mass defection from Soviet rule and communism in the east of Germany.

The Queensland border closure, in place since mid-March, was enacted to stop the spread of deadly COVID-19 from hot spots in New South Wales and Victoria.

LNP Gaven candidate Kirsten Jackson’s controversial post. Photo: Facebook
LNP Gaven candidate Kirsten Jackson’s controversial post. Photo: Facebook

Screenshots of Ms Jackson's post were shared by Health Minister Steven Miles and Gold Coast Young Labor.

"In 1992 I was selected to be an exchange student to Germany," Ms Jackson wrote.

 

 

"At the time I had the opportunity to speak to both residents of East and West Berlin. It forever haunted me that a Government could arbitrarily separate families.

"(The Queensland border closure) was always a segregation by stealth.

Gaven LNP candidate Kirsten Jackson. Picture Glenn Hampson
Gaven LNP candidate Kirsten Jackson. Picture Glenn Hampson

"I have no problem with following sound health advice, but the closure of borders on political grounds is terrifying."

Ms Jackson said she stood by her comments. She said the post was mistakenly deleted but had been re-posted.

"We need strong borders to protect lives and livelihoods, but the Palaszczuk Government needs to show some compassion and common sense as well," she told the Bulletin.

"Annastacia Palaszczuk has politicised the borders at a time when we should be working together.

 

"As a border community, the Gold Coast has felt the full force of the ongoing border chaos, when local residents are just trying to go about their normal lives.

"I stand by my comments on social media. The post was inadvertently deleted and it has been re-posted.

 

How Health Minister Steven Miles responded to Kirsten Jackson’s post. Photo: Facebook
How Health Minister Steven Miles responded to Kirsten Jackson’s post. Photo: Facebook

"Queensland has the worst unemployment rate in the nation and 17,200 Gold Coasters have lost their jobs in the last year because Labor doesn't have an economic plan for Queensland.

I'm focused on building a stronger economy and creating a decade of secure jobs."

In sharing the post, Labor MP Mr Miles wrote: "Can you believe the LNP is comparing Queensland's border closure to the Berlin Wall? How offensive."

It comes ahead of the state election's first major candidates breakfast on Thursday. Ms Jackson is trying to wrestle Gaven off Labor incumbent Meaghan Scanlon.

Ms Jackson's post received more than 400 comments and upwards of 100 shares on Mr Miles' Facebook page.

Some commenters referred to the post as "inappropriate" and "beyond belief".

"How inappropriate and appalling to compare a border closure for health and safety reasons with the Berlin Wall," wrote Val Sampson.

 

Deputy Premier and Health Minister Steven Miles. Picture: Attila Csaszar.
Deputy Premier and Health Minister Steven Miles. Picture: Attila Csaszar.

"You have no idea what it was like to live behind the wall. I know people and their families who did and what it was like for them for years and years, not days and weeks."

Others called for her to step down from her election campaign.

"If you are inferring the Queensland borders have been closed for political reasons then the best thing you can do is cancel your nomination," wrote Bill Kelly.

"At a time like this when it has become vitally important to close the borders for health and safety reasons, you adding to the worries of the people is diabolical."

It comes just days after Qantas CEO Alan Joyce labelled border closures across the country "politically driven" as the tourism industry continues to struggle.

Originally published as LNP candidate's 'appalling' Berlin Wall border comments


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