Press conferences and PR slip ups bring Scott Morrison under more fire

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Australia is currently experiencing its most severe fire season to date, with the country announcing it an official state of emergency. While the rest of the world is sending ‘thoughts and prayers’ for the “international crisis” at hand, Australia’s Prime Minister still refuses to acknowledge the scale of the issue.

In a press conference today, he fixated on extending the message that it was a “similar challenge as last year” and says the fire services have nothing but praise for the assistance of the Australian government.

Though, as Prime Minister Scott Morrison visits rural communities and firefighters in the brunt of the crisis, he has received few warm welcomes. A number of locals and firefighters also refused to shake the Prime Ministers hand.

As a father and son lost their lives in Cobargo NSW, the Prime Minister’s visit, which undoubtedly was aimed to extend a gesture of support, was met with angry locals begging the Prime Minister: “we need more help”. To which the visibly uncomfortable leader turned his back.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister has maintained his stance that climate change has nothing to do with the increased devastations associated with this years bushfire season.

READ MORE: Scott Morrison releases “opinion” statement on bushfires and climate change

As the NSW bushfire death toll has risen to 8 this week, other leaders in Australia and around the world have acknowledged that the scale of this state of emergency has been unheard of in Australia’s natural disaster history.

Opposition leader Anthony Albanese said, “We haven’t, in my lifetime, had people on beaches waiting to be evacuated in life jackets sending boats out to sea like it’s a peacetime version of something that we have seen during wartime.”

Meanwhile, US politician Bernie Sanders used the failures of the Australian government’s response to the bushfires as an example for his own political campaign, pushing his ‘Green New Deal’ proposal.

While yesterday, as the country was preparing for the state of emergency, the Prime Minister was at Kirribilli House hosting a reception for the Australia and New Zealand cricket teams ahead of the SCG Test. He received further criticisms after stating the bushfires are happening “against the backdrop of this test match”.

“Whether they’re started by lightning storms or whatever the cause may be, our firefighters and all of those have come behind them to support them, whether they’re volunteering on the front line or behind the scenes in a great volunteer effort, it is something that will happen against the backdrop of this test match,” he said.

“But at the same time Australians will be gathered whether it’s at the SCG (Sydney Cricket Ground) or around television sets all around the country and they’ll be inspired by the great feats of our cricketers from both sides of the Tasman and I think they’ll be encouraged by the spirit shown by Australians and the way that people have gone about remembering the terrible things that other Australians are dealing with at the moment.”

The Prime Minister’s tweet from November.

The Prime Minister’s decision to go on a family holiday to Hawaii also added to the list of criticisms he has faced during this years bushfire crisis.

A mural in Sydney mocking the Prime Minister’s decision to go to Hawaii over Christmas during the bushfire crisis.

A mural mocking the Prime Minister’s decision to go to Hawaii over the Christmas period during the bushfire crisis was painted in a Sydney suburb. Artist Scott Marsh says he finished the mural in Chippendale last Tuesday, but by Friday it was gone.

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