Linda Reynolds admitted to hospital amid parliament rape allegation scandal
Western Australian Senator Linda Reynolds has taken medical leave after being admitted to Canberra Hospital.
The move was made on advice from her cardiologist, relating to a pre-existing medical condition.
Ms Reynolds was set to appear before the National Press Club today, expected to front questions about her handling of the sexual assault allegations made by former staffer Brittany Higgins.
“That will negate the need for any tricky questions from members of the media about her lack of memory when it comes to what happened in relation to Brittany Higgins,” said Ray Hadley, who first reported the issue for 2GB.
Nine News Federal Political Editor Chris Ulhmann later told Deborah Knight he doesn’t believe the issues are related.
“The cynics … are saying the reason the Minister’s been admitted to hospital is so she doesn’t have to face those questions,”
“But I think it’s been pretty obvious since late last week that Linda Reynolds was personally struggling.
“She broke down in parliament answering a question that was unrelated to this issue.”
Senator Reynolds has been contacted by the Prime Minister, who expressed his concern and sympathy.
Brittany Higgins also released a short statement on Twitter, wishing her “all the best with her recovery”.
Let’s just hope that from this whole horrible situation there will actually be some fundamental reform to the MOP(S) Act for vulnerable staff and improvements to the workplace culture in Parliament House. (2/2)
— Brittany Higgins (@BrittHiggins_) February 23, 2021
Senator Marise Payne will be the Acting Defense Minister until Ms Reynolds returns.
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Image: Sam Mooy / Getty