Pauline Hanson: Muslims hate 'western society'
One Nation leader Pauline Hanson asks Insider's Barry Cassidy if he'd "be happy living under Islam". (Vision courtesy: ABC)
Muslims want to impose Sharia law because they "hate Western society," Australia needs a "strong" leader like Vladimir Putin and the government must stop "blackmailing" parents into vaccinating their children, Pauline Hanson has told the ABC.
In the wide-ranging television interview, Pauline Hanson also backed Fair Work's cuts to penalty rates, warned her support for the Turnbull government's company tax cut plan is not guaranteed and urged rogue Coalition MP George Christensen not to defect to her One Nation party.
In her first appearance on the ABC's Insiders program, the Queensland senator also conceded her infamous 1996 warning that Australia was in danger of being "swamped by Asians" had not come to pass.
Senator Hanson - who will spend the next week in Western Australia as One Nation seeks to make gains at next weekend's state election - used the interview to ratchet up her attack on Islam and its followers, making no distinction between radical and moderate adherents of the religion.
"It is purporting to be a religion but I believe it is a political ideology who want to impose their Sharia law and impose their way of life and their thoughts, processes, on the rest of our society," she said.
"They hate Western society. They want to change us. Do you want to be changed? Would you be happy under Islam?"
Pressed on Australia's success as a multicultural melting pot, Senator Hanson said: "Melting pots, yes, that's what they want. Multiculturalism. I believe we are multiracial but we must be Australians - the one culture, the one law."
Senator Hanson doubled down on her support of Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying voters wish they had a leader like him - despite Russia's role in the missile attack on MH17 that killed 38 Australians.
"I respect the man. He is very patriotic towards his country, the people love him, he is doing so well for the country. So many Australians here want that leadership here in Australia," she said.
She called the MH17 attack "disgusting" but questioned the well-documented evidence of Russian involvement and suggested Putin could not be held accountable: "Have you got the proof he did it? Did he push the button?"
Senator Hanson also appeared to question the benefits of child vaccination, despite the weight of scientific evidence of its benefits.
"I advise parents to go out and do their own research with regards to this. No one is going to care any more about the child than the parents themselves. Make an informed decision. What I don't like about it is the blackmailing that's happening with the government. Don't do that to people. That's a dictatorship."
The federal government requires parents to vaccinate their children before they can collect certain family payments and child care benefits.
On the economy, Senator Hanson backed the decision to cut the Sunday penalty rates of retail, hospitality and fast food workers "because I'm hoping to give small businesses a chance for growth".
But on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull's $50 billion company tax cut plan she was non-committal, saying she would prefer to see the government join with the states to cut "stupid" payroll tax.
In regards to ongoing speculation Mr Christensen may defect from the Coalition as support for One Nation soars in his Queensland electorate of Dawson, Senator Hanson urged him to stay put.
"If he jumps ship, it will destabilise the government and I don't believe the people want that and they would not want it from me," she said, but added "I'm not going to say no" if he does choose to defect.
On her warning about Asian immigration in her 1996 maiden speech, Senator Hanson said that fate was averted because the Howard government made cuts to immigration. In fact, immigration reached record heights under Howard.