Scott Morrison has stood by an ad posted on his social media page promoting the government’s bushfire response, despite the fierce backlash he received.
The ad, which has been described as “shameless” and is a breach of political advertising rules, promoted the liberal government’s plan to deploy up to 3,000 defence force reservists to help with the bushfire crisis.
We’re putting more Defence Force boots on the ground, more planes in the sky, more ships to sea, and more trucks to roll in to support the bushfire fighting effort and recovery as part of our co-ordinated response to these terrible #bushfires pic.twitter.com/UiOeYB2jnv
— Scott Morrison (@ScottMorrisonMP) January 4, 2020
Authorised by Morrison, the liberal party also posted details of the government response on its social media channels.
Mon-partisan watchdog The Australia Defence Associated has accused Morrison’s government of breaching rules around political advertising.
1) Party-political advertising milking ADF support to civil agencies fighting bushfires is a clear breach of the (reciprocal) non-partisanship convention applying to both the ADF & Ministers/MPs. 2) Also cliche-ridden. 3) Its "defence force", not "Defence Force". #auspol #ausdef https://t.co/RlepHHbIx9
— Australia Defence Association (@austdef) January 4, 2020
Meanwhile, countless public figures have taken to social media to express their anger, including former prime minister Kevin Rudd.
He tweeted: “On a day we have catastrophic fire conditions, in the midst of a genuine national crisis, Morrison, the marketing guy, does what? He releases a Liberal Party ad! He is no longer fit to hold the high office of prime minister.”
For God’s sake! On a day we have catastrophic fire conditions, in the midst of a genuine national crisis, Morrison, the marketing guy, does what? He releases a Liberal Party ad! He is no longer fit to hold the high office of prime minister. https://t.co/1OZqEZalOa
— Kevin Rudd (@MrKRudd) January 4, 2020