Newman slams candidate’s past ‘crude’ behaviour

 

FORMER premier Campbell Newman claims Labor's new lord mayoral candidate Patrick Condren fails the political character test, accusing him of inappropriate behaviour towards "politicians, political staffers and media colleagues" in his previous job as a television journalist.

The explosive attack from Mr Newman follows two cryptic tweets he fired off to Mr Condren in 2017 and 2018, in which he made reference to the use of "crude sexual innuendo" in front of female colleagues.

Mr Condren said last night he wouldn't comment on "baseless allegations" made by Mr Newman, who was also Brisbane's lord mayor for seven years, saying the LNP was "scraping the bottom of the barrel" in a vain attempt to undermine his campaign.

"Queenslanders passed their judgment on Mr Newman in 2015, dumping him from office after a single term as premier and what he's saying now says more about him than it does about me," Mr Condren said. "In response to the serious claims, I won't dignify those sorts of baseless allegations with a response."

Labor’s candidate for Lord Mayor Pat Condren. Picture: Annette Dew
Labor’s candidate for Lord Mayor Pat Condren. Picture: Annette Dew

The explosive war of words has erupted within the first week of the lord mayoral campaign after Labor dumped Rod Harding to make way for Mr Condren, a former state political editor for the Seven Network and 4BC mornings host.

Mr Newman said Mr Condren had no vision for Brisbane and did not have a plan.

"He doesn't even know who the members of the ALP team are," Mr Newman said.

"Condren has already demonstrated a cavalier and arrogant attitude, effectively saying that these things don't matter and neither does he have any responsibility to be across the detail.

"He is a manifestly unsuitable candidate, cynically foisted on the community by a 'do nothing' Premier that is unable to deal with integrity issues in her own team.

"In my 11 years in public office, I saw and heard of repeated instances of inappropriate behaviour by Condren in his dealings with politicians, political staffers and his own media colleagues.

 

Campbell Newman has taken exception to Patrick Condren’s coverage of politics. Picture: Annette Dew
Campbell Newman has taken exception to Patrick Condren’s coverage of politics. Picture: Annette Dew

 

"Brisbane does not need someone who not only fails that proverbial 'pub test' but more importantly the character test."

Mr Newman said he believed others who had experienced Mr Condren's behaviour would come forward before the council poll, "as they surely should".

Mr Condren said Mr Newman had made no secret of the fact he didn't like him.

"As the state political editor for Seven and a radio broadcaster, I held him to account and refused to bow to his bully boy tactics," Mr Condren said.

"I will continue to ignore his bully boy tactics. He was pleasant enough when he wanted to speak to me at 4BC but now this suits his agenda and he's having a go.

"I'm disappointed the LNP is scraping the bottom of the barrel. I'll be playing the ball not the man, I'm about policy not personalities.,

"You've had Newman come out, (Deb) Frecklington has had a go, (Tim) Mander. They are clearly rattled."