Daily News Roundup

April 30, 2019

One Nation leader Pauline Hanson has accepted the resignation of Steve Dickson, one of her party’s Senate candidates for Queensland, after footage was released of him making derogatory comments and touching a dancer in a US strip club.

“I’m upset with this, Steve is a family man … I’m sorry he is deeply upset by this I’m not going to judge him any further,” Ms Hanson said at a hastily convened press conference this morning.

She said the footage, which was aired on Channel Nine’s  A Current Affair, could not be ignored or condoned.

“I am both a mother of three boys and the only female leader of a political party in this country,” she said.

“I wouldn’t tolerate my own children behaving this way towards women and I cannot and will not condone my own candidates dealing with women in this fashion either.

Mr Dickson said in a statement he apologised sincerely for his behaviour.

“The footage shown does not reflect the person I am. It shows a person who was drunk and not in control of his actions and I take full responsibility for allowing that to happen,” he said.

The vision was recorded during an undercover investigation by Al Jazeera but aired for the first time by Nine’s A Current Affair on Monday.

It was filmed as part of the same operation which last month revealed Mr Dickson and party advisor James Ashby travelled to the US last year seeking campaign help from lobby groups like the National Rifle Association (NRA).

The newly released recordings showed Mr Dickson talking disparagingly about the dancers with fake gun rights advocate Rodger Muller in the Washington club.

He refers to one dancer as a “b**ch” and says of another: “Little t**s, nothing there.”

Mr Dickson is also filmed as saying: ” I think white women f**k a whole lot better, they know what they’re doing. Asian chicks don’t.

“I’ve done more Asian than I know what to do with.”

Another segment shows him talking with a dancer after slipping money into her lingerie.

In his statement he said he was deeply remorseful for his “disrespectful comments towards women”.

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United States Deputy Attorney-General Rod Rosenstein, who appointed special counsel Robert Mueller, has resigned from the Trump administration.

There has been repeated speculation Mr Rosenstein was going to be sacked since last year

Reports circulated last year that Mr Rosenstein had suggested secretly recording Mr Trump as part of a plan to remove him from office

His departure, effective from May 11, ends a nearly two-year run defined by his appointment of Mr Mueller to investigate connections between the Trump campaign and Russia.

The departure had been expected since the confirmation of William Barr as Attorney-General.

The White House nominated a replacement for the department’s number two spot weeks ago.

Mr Mueller submitted his report to the Justice Department last month and Mr Rosenstein was part of a small group of department officials who reviewed the document and helped shape its public release.

After Mr Mueller failed to reach a conclusion about whether Mr Trump had obstructed the investigation, Mr Barr and Mr Rosenstein stepped in and determined the evidence was not enough to support such an allegation.

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Norwegian fishermen have discovered a beluga whale wearing a harness raising the suspicion that it may have escaped a Russian military facility.

One Norwegian professor believed it was “most likely” that Russian Navy was involved

Joergen Ree Wiig of the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries said “Equipment St. Petersburg” was written on the harness strap, which featured a mount for an action camera.

He said fishermen in Arctic waters last week reported the tame white cetacean with the tight harness to the directorate.

On Friday, fisherman Joar Hesten, aided by Mr Ree Wiig, jumped into the frigid water to remove the harness, according to newsagency reports.

Mr Ree Wiig said “people in Norway’s military have shown great interest” in the harness.