‘In my local everyone should be equal’
FORMER Australian politician Sam Dastyari has taken a not-so-subtle stab at Malcolm Turnbull after publicly throwing his support behind the man who flipped off the PM.
Mr Dastyari has started a GoFundMe page to raise money for the Brisbane man who was fined for allegedly yelling abuse at Mr Turnbull and giving him "the finger" in a pub on Thursday night.
The former Labor senator announced he was quitting politics late last year amid scrutiny of his dealings with a Chinese businessman and political donor.
He shared the crowd-funding campaign on Twitter yesterday, writing: "I found the bloke who got fined $250 for telling the PM to piss off. Sending him $250 worth of beer. Pitch in $5 and buy him a beer."
Adding: "Where are the free speech warriors on this?"
Twitter - I found the bloke who got fined $250 for telling the PM to piss off. Sending him $250 worth of beer. Pitch in $5 and buy him a beer. WHERE ARE THE FREE SPEECh WARRIORS ON THIS? https://t.co/mQKLzAh6xQ— Sam Dastyari (@samdastyari) May 20, 2018
The bloke in question, 27-year-old Nick Gordon, was detained after he reportedly became irate when Mr Turnbull and his group were served at the bar before him during a political event at the Carindale Hotel.
Police described the man as an "angry landscaper" and he was snapped standing behind the PM holding up the middle finger of his right hand.
Mr Turnbull's security detail swooped on the man, believed to be in his twenties, and pushed him away.
But he was later detained by guards in the Carindale Shopping Centre before police were called.
Queensland Police issued him with a fine for failing to leave a licensed premises.
Speaking on Kyle and Jackie O this morning, Nick said he was frustrated when the Prime Minister pushed in front of him.
"I was there with a friend, just to have a couple of pokes on the pokies, and I was in line for about five minutes," he said. "I go there most arvos after work.
"He just pushed in and I was like 'What?' I don't care who you are - even if you're the PM - when you walk into my local everyone should be treated equal.
"I said, 'If you don't have any respect around this joint, just go back to Parliament House and have a cup of tea down there.'"
He said he was fined $756 over the incident, as opposed to $250 as previously stated.
In just one day Mr Dastyari has already managed to raise over $600 from his campaign, titled "Australia owes this man a beer", and people were quick to share their thoughts on the matter.
"Anyone who gives Turnbull the finger deserves a beer and a pat on the back," one said.
"How in the world did someone get fined $250 for a gesture of a single digit to someone who wasn't even looking to be offended?" another asked.
Mr Turnbull later mentioned the incident to reporters after claiming the event went "very well."
"We had a great visit. It was a very warm welcome, an open session and there were a questions on a whole range of topics," he said.
"There was one gentleman there who clearly had a few drinks too many."
"I think he was assisted in making an early return home. Which is probably where he should have gone earlier in the evening, as I'm sure he's worked out by this morning."