The real reason Abbott broke his promise on section 18C

As the conflict in Gaza escalates, the timing of a repeal of section 18C of the Racial Discrimation Act could not have been worse for the government. It is unlikely to be revisited anytime soon.

So the commitment to either repeal or seriously water down section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act has been abandoned by the government. The announcement was made by Tony Abbott, who said he had made a “leadership” call. In other words, he did not consult Attorney-General George Brandis before he made the announcement.

It clearly represents a broken promise, especially to some of his closest supporters, including the columnist Andrew Bolt and the recently appointed Human Rights Commissioner Tim Wilson. They will be deeply disappointed by this decision.

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