Prime Minister Anthony Albanese has urged Senator Lidia Thorpe to “get some support” in the wake of her explosive strip club meltdown.
The Victorian senator has been under pressure following the emergence of CCTV footage of her engaged in a physical altercation with a group of men outside of Maxine’s Gentlemen’s Club in Melbourne over the weekend.
In the footage, Senator Thorpe taunted a man for having a “small penis” and accused the men of stealing her land.
On Wednesday, the Prime Minister weighed into the fracas, calling the Greens defector’s behaviour inappropriate.
“I hope that Lidia gets some support. I think that level of behaviour is quite clearly unacceptable and I think there are obvious issues that need to be dealt with, in terms of her health issues,” he told Sydney’s 2SM radio.
“These are not the actions of anyone who should be participating in society in a normal way, let alone a senator.
“Lidia needs to be very conscious of the way in which this behaviour has been seen.”
Senator Thorpe has been contacted for comment about the Prime Minister’s remarks.
Security footage of the 3am incident, obtained by news.com.au earlier this week, showed the senator circling the men waiting outside the strip club before pointing her finger and shouting, after one of the men involved called her a “racist dog”.
“All I want to say to the black brothers there and anyone that we’re fighting,’’ she said.
“Any black man that stands with the f***ing white little c*** like that – youse (sic) can all get f***ed too.”
She has since been banned for life from the Brunswick establishment.
In a statement to 7News, who first aired the footage of the spray, Senator Thorpe said she did not start the exchange, but had responded to taunts and harassment levelled against her.
“It’s sad people are utilising whatever they can to drag me down when we’re trying to discuss important issues in this country,” she said.
Earlier this week, One Nation senator Pauline Hanson called for police to investigate the independent’s outburst.
“I think Victoria police should be carefully examining that footage to determine if Senator Thorpe has broken the law,” Senator Hanson said.
“The Australian Human Rights Commission might also consider examining the footage for possible breaches of Section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act. I think the people subjected to her abuse on the weekend should come forward and see that she is held accountable, because the Senate has shown it’s too gutless to do so.
“No one – least of all an elected representative of the people – is above the law.”
The strip club meltdown is just the latest in a string of controversial incidents the senator has been involved in recent months, which included her temporarily halting the Mardi Gras parade in a protest against police.
Mr Albanese said it was becoming a “repeat exercise” for the senator.
“You know, the event at Mardi Gras where laid in front of a truck, that was actually a truck for Twenty10, a youth service that looks after young gay and lesbian people, a service from my electorate,” the Prime Minister said.
“Why someone would lay in front of that truck in order to get attention is beyond my comprehension and I hope that she gets some form of support.”
Originally published as Anthony Albanese responds to Lidia Thorpe’s strip club meltdown