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There's a reason the PM lacked credibility when facing off against Aly

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23.03.2019

There's a particular posture Scott Morrison adopts when he's pushing back in an interview. He leans back in his chair, clasps his hands together and crosses one leg over the other. Often his voice will pitch up in tone or he'll adopt an air of incredulity, as if signalling the question is stupid or the answer obvious. Sometimes he's probably right.

I've seen this up close myself and the country saw it in full bloom during his 35-minute interview with Waleed Aly on The Project on Thursday night.

Scott Morrison was visibly incensed he had been accused of fostering Islamophobia.Credit:Network 10

The whole occasion was, frankly, bizarre. Morrison was ostensibly drawn to the interview to defend himself against accusations levelled at him in a 2011 news report in The Sydney Morning Herald that he told a shadow cabinet meeting the Coalition should think about exploiting anti-Muslim sentiment for votes.

Aly referred to this report in an editorial the night of the Christchurch massacre. The clip has been viewed more than 14 million times. Suddenly, ancient history raised troubling questions about the Prime Minister's character. The report in question may not paint him as prejudiced but it definitely makes him look unscrupulous.

It's easy to see why Morrison would want to hose down these claims. And it's commendable - almost remarkable - that he did so in a long-form, one-on-one television interview with his accuser........

© Brisbane Times