In what is now the second egging of an Australian politician this year, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison became the victim of a run-by egging Tuesday by what he suggested was one of the “idiot” vegans protesting farmers. Luckily for posterity, the moment was caught — like all public moments now — on camera. The protester was arrested, and though she knocked over an elderly lady, no one was hurt. But, if nothing else, the bizarre incident did produce a rather memorable quote from the PM.
Footage of the egging — which BBC reports took place at a Country Women’s Association event in Albury on Tuesday — was caught by Sky News. In the footage, Morrison is chatting with some folks when a woman, reportedly in her mid-20s, passes behind him and attempts to break an egg on his head. She fails, the egg bouncing off, but she successfully gets herself promptly arrested.
Below is Sky News’ coverage, which shows the egging followed by the rather chaotic scene when the woman is restrained by security:
The elderly woman who was knocked over, Margaret Baxter, told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation that despite having just had stomach surgery, she was uninjured. “My main concern was holding my stomach to make sure it didn’t get hit,” she said, BBC reports.
Morrison posted a notable response to the incident on Twitter. “My concern about today’s incident in Albury was for the older lady who was knocked off her feet. I helped her up and gave her a hug,” he wrote.
He then unleashed on the activists he suggested were behind the egging: “Our farmers have to put up with these same idiots who are invading their farms and their homes,” he wrote. “We will stand up to thuggery whether it’s these cowardly activists who have no respect for anyone, or militant unionists standing over small businesses and their employees on work sites,” he added in a follow-up tweet.
BBC explains that “vegan activists” have been protesting Australian farmers recently. Though Morrison obviously felt confident that the woman was one of those vegan “idiots,” BBC notes that the police “did not immediately speculate on a motive for Tuesday’s incident, nor whether it was suspected of being linked to other protests.”
According to BBC, the first Australian political egging of 2019 was directed at Sen. Fraser Anning, a far-right independent senator who was met with widespread backlash after he attempted to blame the horrific mosque shootings in Christchurch, New Zealand on immigration policies rather than the white supremacist who carried out the attack.
“The real cause of bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program that allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place,” said Anning, who was then formally censured by the Australian Senate.
Among those who rebuked Anning was Prime Minister Morrison, who said his comments “blaming the murderous attacks by a violent, rightwing, extremist terrorist in New Zealand on immigration are disgusting.”