The extraordinary threat was made after Labor frontbencher Doug Cameron asked Senator Cash if her newly appointed chief-of-staff, who is yet to start work, was formerly employed in another Liberal office.
“If you want to start discussing staff matters be very, very careful because I’m happy to sit here and name every young woman in Mr Shorten’s office over which rumours in this place abound,” Senator Cash told the Senate hearing under parliamentary privilege on Wednesday.
“Do you want to start naming them? Do you want [me] to start naming them for Mr Shorten to deny any of the rumours that have been circulating in this building now for many, many years?”
Michaelia Cash makes the comments she would later withdraw. Post continues.
Labor’s Senate leader Penny Wong said the minister had made “outrageous slurs” against female staff working in the opposition leader’s office.
“It can’t be allowed to stand. I think it is disgraceful and sexist and it is impugning of the character of various staff. I would ask the minister to withdraw,” Senator Wong told the hearing later.
Senator Cash disagreed with Senator Wong, arguing she was responding to Senator Cameron maligning her staff.