Ask Australian Political Candidate to Apologize for Homophobic Comments

Target: Tess Corbett, Australian Katter Political Party (KAP) hopeful

Goal: Apologize for the bigoted and homophobic statements made comparing gay and lesbian people to pedophiles

Tess Corbett, a candidate for Australia’s Katter Political Party (KAP), recently suggested to a local newspaper that discrimination was acceptable in some cases. She stated that she did not want “gays, lesbians and pedophiles” working with children. When asked if she considered homosexuality to be akin to pedophilia, Corbett responded in the affirmative, suggesting that the current political trend indicated that pedophiles would soon be negotiating for their own rights.

Tess Corbett was recently preselected as a candidate for Australia’s Katter Political Party by party creator Bob Katter, to run in the seat of Wannon, in Western Victoria. In a conversation with a local newspaper about the Australian Labor Party’s anti-discrimination bill, Corbett remarked that discrimination was justifiable in many cases. As an example, she said that she did not want gays, lesbians and pedophiles teaching in “[her] kindergarten,” and if they had a problem with that, they could find another kindergarten. Corbett’s interviewer went on to ask if Corbett considered homosexuality and pedophilia equal. Corbett easily responded, “Yes,” and added, “Pedophiles will be next in line to be recognized in the same way as gays and lesbians and get rights.”

A public outcry following the release of the interview forced Ms. Corbett to withdraw her application for candidacy in the KAP. KAP creator, Bob Katter, also told a newspaper that Corbett’s comments were “stupid.” However, instead of condemning the remarks, KAP president Max Menzel stated that, “Tess has great ability and the recent incident is regrettable,” and other members of the KAP personally endorsed Corbett’s bigoted opinions. A statement released by the KAP National Director remarked that the party was fighting for the prosperity of “all” Australians – “retirees, Mums, farmers, manufacturers and families” – but failed to even mention gay and lesbian individuals.

The reaction of the KAP to Tess Corbett’s offensive statements has been underwhelming, and has an air of damage control instead of true regret and remorse. Although Corbett has removed herself from the upcoming election, neither she nor the KAP have apologized for the offensive remarks. Sign the petition below to demand that Tess Corbett offer a public apology for the damaging, homophobic comments she made.


Dear Ms. Corbett,

Recently you made a number of homophobic comments to a local newspaper and suggested the homosexuality and pedophilia fall under a single category. These remarks were offensive, bigoted and damaging. While you offered to remove your application for candidacy to the KAP, simply backing out of a situation is not enough.

I am writing to demand that you apologize for the seditious comments you made. Considering that you were in the process of running for a political party that would represent the people of Australia, your remarks were particularly inappropriate. Please rectify the disservice you have done to your fellow country people by issuing a public apology.


[Your Name Here]

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