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A female political has proved that she’s more than just a pair of boobs, after being selected to run in a key battleground seat in the upcoming Australian elections.
Lawyer Brooke Vitnell was the focus of a major political row three years ago when the former Queensland leader of the Liberal National Party, John-Paul Langbroek, posted a schoolboy comment underneath a photo taken at Canberra’s mid-winter ball.
Ms Vitnell was with her husband, Julian Leembruggen, who is the Prime Minister’s communications director and wearing a low-cut silver gown.
After the snap was posted to a political colleague’s Instagram account, Mr Langbroek posted a comment with the symbols "(.)(.)".
The childish response sparked a debate about sexism in Australian politics and even in Mr Langbroek’s home. He confessed that his wife had told him off about the comment and said that he had realised it was completely "inappropriate".
"I removed it this morning without being prompted, and I apologise for any offence caused," he said at the time.
Speaking to The Gold Coast Bulletin he said that his wife had taken him to task about his behaviour.
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"She said to me, 'You’re an old man, you can’t do things like that,'" Mr Langbroek said, adding that she’d told him that that kind of behaviour was "a bit silly. You can think it, but don’t write it".
Mr Langbroek’s ’s suggestive comment had come just a day after Australian MP Julia Banks made a call for gender quotas to reform the "sexist" culture of the federal Liberal Party.
Ms Vitnell is seen as a frontrunner in the upcoming contest.
She currently practices in family law, parenting matters, property law, wills and estates and has previous experience in political campaigning, having acted as an adviser to Defence Industry Minister Steven Ciobo and senators Michaelia Cash and Concetta Fierravanti-Wells.
Australian politics experts say that victory for her in Paterson could prove crucial to Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s hopes of running in the next election.
It’s currently held by Labor‘s Meryl Swanson, but her 5% majority makes it a prime target for the Liberals.
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