Member of the Victorian Legislative Council Moira Deeming has disgracefully been expelled from the Victorian parliamentary Liberal Party.
Her Crime? Standing up for herself, and for women and girls.
On 18 March 2023, Moira spoke at Kellie-Jay Keen’s Let Women Speak rally in Melbourne, organised to help raise awareness about the harmful impact of allowing biological males who say they’re women to self-identify into female-only spaces, services and sports, and the harms of gender ideology more broadly.
The event was gatecrashed by a group of men from the National Socialist Network who performed the Nazi salute on the steps of Parliament. This was then used by Victorian Liberal Leader John Pesutto to accuse Moira (and other women) of associating with neo-Nazis or neo-Nazi sympathisers in order to swiftly move a motion to expel her from the party.
There not being enough support to expel Moira, who had done nothing wrong, the party voted to suspend her for nine months instead. This was a result that she only accepted because she had been assured that a joint media statement by herself and John Pesutto would be issued to clear her family’s name of Nazi slurs, making it clear that she is not a Nazi sympathiser. However, the joint statement was never made.
Six weeks later, Moira told John Pesutto that if he did not honour the terms of the suspension and publicly declare she was not a Nazi sympathiser, she would be forced to challenge the suspension and bring legal action. He refused, and five other MPs brought a second motion to expel Moira for “bringing discredit” on the party – though as with the original expulsion motion and suspension, the grounds are unclear.
On 12 May, Victorian Liberal MPs voted to expel Moira from the Parliamentary Liberal Party. They also voted to remove Renee Heath as Party Secretary, for her role in the original expulsion minutes, which John Pesutto did not approve of. Again, the grounds for Renee’s demotion are unclear. Both motions passed 19:11. A third motion was also moved by John Pesutto to introduce his own version of the original expulsion minutes, which passed with less support.
Moira has since issued John Pesutto with a defamation concerns notice, as a last resort to clear her name.
What has happened to Moira is gravely unjust. The lies, the lack of due process and the silencing are not only an attack on one woman, but on all the women and girls Moira represents. Moreover, it is an affront to all the Victorians who voted for her.