Published: Mon, November 13, 2017
Finance | By Loren Pratt

Senator Fraser Anning denies claims he 'abandoned' One Nation

Senator Fraser Anning denies claims he 'abandoned' One Nation

One Nation's newest senator Fraser Anning has quit Pauline Hanson's party to sit as an independent just minutes before being sworn in.

Today she's writing a new chapter with the defection the party's newest senator, Fraser Anning, the Queenslander meant to replace Malcolm Roberts, who was ousted by the High Court for being a dual national, a problem that had its own weird twists and turns.

Senator Hanson claimed Senator Anning defected from the party, and suggested he would be an independent "until something else comes along".

The One Nation leader also revealed she had been unable to contact Senator Anning until Monday when the Senate reconvened.

Speculation now is whether Senator Anning will join the parties of the two senators who this morning walked in with him.

Senator Leyonhjelm issued a statement saying: "Senator David Leyonhjelm vouched for new One Nation senator Fraser Anning in the chamber this morning, in the company of Senator Bernardi".

"Mr Anning was advised that David Goodridge, Leon Ashby, Richard Howard and Boston White were not welcome to this morning's Party room meeting, because of their disloyalty to their former employer and myself", Senator Hanson.

He states that departure didn't constitute as a defection in his mind, and that "the next thing I knew, I saw on the TV that I had supposedly become an independent".

The new record for a One Nation senator leaving the party is.less than an hour.

"Since January, I have made a strong stand for the Sunshine Coast to get its proper share of funding", he said.

Senator Anning was elected to the senate after Mr Roberts was forced to resign due his British citizenship.

"It seems that without even contacting me, Pauline has unilaterally kicked me out of her party", he said.

'Instead he chose to release scathing media releases demanding I pledge my support to him without even meeting or speaking to him, ' Ms Hanson said. "I have to say that I'm stunned".

"I've been out and around this electorate and I know Steve Dickson is going to win and I'm positive about that", she said.

And with fears of a resurgent One Nation ahead of the Queensland election, it's worth recalling that within a year of 11 PHON members being elected in 1998 had left the party and One Nation was deregistered in Queensland by August 1999.

He was planning to move to the United States.

He had expected to be accompanied by One Nation senators into the Senate chamber for his swearing in, as is usual practice, but that changed at the last moment, he said.

He had been aware of the tensions earlier but had been told by a One Nation senator at the weekend that all was well with Anning. He first stood for the seat of Fairfax for One Nation almost 20 years ago in John Howard's GST election. Anning would have to be comfortable with the party, he said.

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