News Corp Australia columnist and Sky News commentator, Andrew Bolt, is seeking free time on ABC TV to respond to the sentencing remarks today delivered live by a Victorian judge when jailing Cardinal George Pell on child sex charges.
“We have heard the tissue-thin reasons the so-called ‘Chief Judge’ of the so-called ‘County Court’ of Victoria has given for the sentence he handed out to a man whom I have declared is totally innocent,” Mr Bolt said.
“These remarks by an unelected ‘judge’ who takes the word of the so-called ‘jury’ over mine represent a travesty of justice.
“This impudence and disrespect for my previous pronouncements of George Pell’s innocence must not go unanswered.
“The ABC now has a duty to give me equal time on its publicly funded airwaves to deliver my own remarks, to once again declare George Pell innocent of all the charges he has faced and any that might arise in the future, and to set George Pell free.
“Unless the ABC agrees to my quite reasonable request, it will simply illustrate that it is a lawless, out-of-control organisation that blatantly preferences left-wing causes and political correctness above the truth.
“It is outrageous that the national broadcaster allowed this nobody, who doesn’t even have a newspaper column or his own regular TV show, to hijack ABC airwaves.
“I demand equal time, and after that I demand that the ABC be shut down or sold off as punishment for wasting money on frivolous broadcast such as we saw today just to pillory an innocent man,” Mr Bolt said.
An ABC spokesperson told The Bug the national broadcaster stood by its decision to go live with Judge Peter Kidd’s sentencing remarks.
“We thought long and hard about doing the live cross,” the spokesperson said, “and we workshopped a range of options.
“In the end we opted for a straightforward telecast of the Chief Judge’s comments and rejected some ideas to dress up the coverage, such as borrowing the Channel Nine ‘worm’ to run across the screen during his remarks.”