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Australia Angus Taylor demands apology from feminist Naomi Wolf over anti-Semitism comments after maiden speech dispute

11:35  05 december  2019
11:35  05 december  2019 Source:   abc.net.au

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Naomi Wolf and Australian minister Angus Taylor feud over accounts of their time at Oxford And Ms Wolf is now demanding an apology from Taylor over what she has called an "imaginary war She also accused Mr Taylor of deploying an " anti - Semitic dogwhistle" with his use of the phrase

Angus Taylor cries foul over Naomi Wolf 's antisemitism claims – video. Angus Taylor has doubled down on his assertion he saw and met the American author Naomi Wolf during his time at Oxford University, while demanding she apologise for accusing him of antisemitism .

Energy Minister Angus Taylor has demanded an apology from a prominent American feminist after she accused him of anti-Semitism.

Dr Naomi Wolf has accused Mr Taylor of making inaccurate claims about her time at Oxford University in 1991 during his first speech to Parliament.

In the speech, Mr Taylor had claimed he was living down the hall from Dr Wolf at Oxford when students were campaigning against a Christmas tree in the common room.

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Angus Taylor and Naomi Wolf . The Australian energy minister and US author have become In his maiden speech to parliament in 2013, Taylor told a story about “political correctness” and a dispute “Catch that anti - Semitic dogwhistle – elitist people ‘who know what’s best for people who are not Referring to Jews like me whom Angus Taylor imagined to be among the warriors against xmas in

However, Dr Wolf has disputed she was even there at the time, saying she was in New York.

What was said in the speech?

Angus Taylor MP wearing a suit and tie: Mr Taylor said he first encountered political correctness when he was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford. (ABC News: Toby Hunt) © Provided by ABC NEWS Mr Taylor said he first encountered political correctness when he was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford. (ABC News: Toby Hunt) In his maiden speech to Parliament in 2013, Mr Taylor said he first encountered political correctness when he was a Rhodes scholar at Oxford.

"It was 1991, and a young Naomi Wolf lived a couple of doors down the corridor," he told Parliament.

"Several graduate students, mostly from the north-east of the US, decided we should abandon the Christmas tree in the common room because some people might be offended."

What does Dr Wolf say happened?

After having the transcript brought to her attention on social media, Dr Wolf claimed Mr Taylor publicly misstated "where she was and what she was doing".

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Naomi Wolf calls on Angus Taylor to correct 'inaccurate' speech . Skip to sections navigation Skip to content Skip to footer. He said that a group of more "mainstream" students pushed back successfully against the bid to remove the Christmas tree.

Naomi Wolf pursues Angus Taylor for 'formal' Hansard correction in Christmas tree row. Taylor says he never suggested she was warring against Christmas or that she was among those Taylor came out swinging in question time at Parliament House on Thursday and demanded she apologise .

She claims she was actually travelling the world on a book tour at the time in question and was living in New York.

She has also objected to an article in which it is suggested she proposed banning the traditional Christmas tree.

Dr Wolf says she has spent the last few days trying to get a correction from Mr Taylor, having called him out repeatedly on social media.

That brings us to the late-night phone call

Then, on, Thursday morning, she released a half-hour-long recording of a late-night phone call with an unnamed member of Mr Taylor's staff, in which she sought a correction to the Minister's assertions.

In the call she asks, "will you tell Parliament please that I was not campaigning against Christmas in any way".

A staff member responds saying that advice has been provided to relevant media outlets and attempts to clarify Mr Taylor's comments a number of times.

Despite Dr Wolf repeatedly stating her name in the call, the staff member does not appear to realise who he is talking to until several minutes into the conversation.

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US author says she recorded a call with Australian minister’s office in which she was told it was ‘a matter of dispute ’ whether she was at Oxford in 1991.

Naomi Wolf pursues Angus Taylor over erroneous first speech . My colleague Helen Davidson has just filed on further developments in the unlikely Taylor referred to Wolf in his maiden speech to parliament in 2013 while recounting an anecdote about “political correctness” and a dispute over a

At one point, Dr Wolf is also told it was an accident the phone was picked up, "it is after midnight in Australia, as in, it is approaching 1:00am".

Dr Wolf has since suggested on Twitter that Mr Taylor was only targeting her because she is Jewish. Mr Taylor has denied that is the case.

What *does* Mr Taylor say?

A spokesperson says Mr Taylor's own grandmother was Jewish, adding he didn't say Dr Wolf was one of the graduates, nor was he referring to her as one of the graduates in the speech.

But when asked about the matter during Question Time, Mr Taylor said he did see Dr Wolf at Oxford.

"Of course I recall seeing and meeting Ms Wolf at New College in Oxford during my time there," he said.

"She began her studies there in the mid-80s and she finished at Oxford only a couple of years ago. Now my speech to the parliament six years ago did not say she was involved in the war on Christmas.

"Her accusation of anti-Semitism is wrong and deeply offensive to me and my family.

"I call on her to apologise for these unsubstantiated and outrageous allegations."

Dr Wolf has since hit back:

So what does Dr Wolf want?

Dr Wolf has demanded Mr Taylor publicly correct the record and remove the mistake from the parliamentary transcript.

"Out of nowhere — I didn't pick this fight — [he] decided to say things about me that are categorically not true," she told Radio National Drive.

"It's up to him as an elected official to correct the record and tell the truth. I didn't initiate this conflict, he did."

She says she has objected to her "name and reputation being misused by an elected official to tell a false story".

"I have no memory of meeting Mr Taylor," she said.

What has the reaction been like?

Labor was quick to jump on Mr Taylor during Question Time.

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese even signed off with:

"As Naomi Wolf would say, have a lovely Christmas," he said.

Labor calls on Prime Minister to act on embattled minister .
As embattled federal minister Angus Taylor prepares to escape attacks over his character while attending an international conference in Spain, politicians back home are still going toe-to-toe over his past. Mr Taylor, the minister for energy and emissions reduction, is heading to Madrid for next week's United Nations-led climate talks.He has faced months of interrogation by Labor over past companies he had been involved in, repeated accusations of misleading parliament and there has been a police investigation into documents he used to attack Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore over her travel expenditure.

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