Darren Hunt quits Bob Katter party in disgust
A CAIRNS state-election candidate formerly considered one of Bob Katter's staunchest supporters has resigned from the Federal MP's political party and lifted the lid on divisions behind closed doors over the group's treatment of homosexuals.Darren Hunt, an ex-police officer who ran under the Katter's Australian Party banner during last year's state election, handed in his resignation yesterday and said he was bitterly disappointed the group's leadership had not moved to denounce more thoroughly the "ridiculous" and "homophobic" comments made by two members last month.
"I love Bob's passion for regional Queensland and what he was trying to achieve ... But it all got drowned out in the white noise as to whether we were all just a bunch of red-necked, homophobic hillbillies and I just can't cop that any more," Mr Hunt said.
Senate nominee Bernard Gaynor was suspended from the party after he said he did not want his children taught by gay teachers and the resignation of Victorian candidate Tess Corbett was accepted after she said gay rights would lead to acceptance of paedophiles.
But Mr Hunt believes not enough has been done to shed the party's homophobic image despite the efforts of himself and other unnamed KAP members who have pushed for change since an anti-gay-marriage election campaign ad sparked outrage last year.
"We tried to change the party and get them to see sense, and we thought they were getting on track but then the comments from the candidate in Victoria and the Senate (candidate), it was the last straw," he said.
But yesterday, Mr Katter stood by pro-gay-marriage candidate Steven Bailey, who was asked to resign from the party because of his views on same-sex marriage.
Mr Katter's office did not return the Post's calls prior to deadline.
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Quit the party: Darren Hunt disagrees with Bob Katter's attitude to gay issues.