Monday, 24 October 2016
To be filed in the “Now I’ve Heard Everything” cabinet…….
The Sydney Morning Herald, 20 October 2016:
A male staffer for a Liberal MP attempted to identify himself as a woman as part of a sneaky factional deal to win a $12,000 executive position in a student election.
Alex Fitton, who works for New South Wales state MP Mark Taylor, vowed he was not a cisgender male in order to become joint general secretary of the University of Sydney Students' Representative Council on Wednesday night.
A cisgender male is a man whose gender identity matches the sex they were assigned at birth. The SRC's affirmative action policy stipulates the coveted council position can be shared by two people, but only if one of them identifies as a woman or a non-cisgender male.
Chair of the SRC standing legal committee, Cameron Caccamo, said Mr Fitton was now in the process of proving his identity, but had thus far fallen short of the legal requirements.
"I have received confirmation that [Mr] Fitton has attempted to notify the RO [returning officer] of his/their gender identity, it has been deemed insufficient, so [Mr] Fitton has the rest of the day to fix that," he told Fairfax Media on Thursday…….
A senior Liberal Party source familiar with Mr Fitton said the move, whether or not it ultimately succeeded, reflected an "immature culture" within the Young Liberals and "desperation" in the ailing centre-right faction of NSW.
"He ran for an affirmative action position by pretending to be a woman," the source said. "He is incredibly blokey. Plays AFL. They all call each other 'the boys'. It's got no basis at all in fact."…..
This is not the first time SRC antics have made headlines. Police had to be called to last year's executive elections due to allegations of a stolen mobile phone (it was later found inside a bin). The meeting erupted into chaos after student politicians reneged on a factional deal, and was even plunged into darkness after somebody cut power to the room.
On Wednesday night, students also elected to their executive a candidate with the policy: "All triplets on campus will be forced to wear large, novelty pirate hats so that they can be identified at all times and from a distance."