On a night otherwise unmarred by the violent incidents which struck last year’s Mardi Gras, one participant has reported an altercation with a man in the Liberal Party float.
Paul Kidd, 49, was marching with “Operation Border Insecurity”, a political float raising concerns about the federal government’s policies, particularly in regard to asylum seekers. He was dressed as Scott Morrison in tropical island drag, because Morrison “used to be the tourism chief and he likes sending people to tropical islands”.
After a staged interaction with the Dykes on Bikes at Taylor Square, Mr Kidd’s float was inserted back into the procession between the Liberal and Labor party floats. He alleges that after exiting Anzac Parade on to the adjacent bus lane, two young members of the Liberal float dropped back from their group and approached him.
Having asked “who are you supposed to be” and being told “Scott Morrison”, Mr Kidd alleges one of the men “tried to grab the placard out of my hand and [then] bashed it into my face”.
“He didn’t hurt me or anything, I had a big foam mask on,” Mr Kidd said.
“I thought about going to the police but I just feel that it was a stupid act by someone who was just…being overly aggressive about something he didn’t agree with.”
Mr Kidd said he will raise the issue with Mardi Gras organisers.
“It’s completely against the spirit of what Mardi Gras is about and I think it reflects really poorly on the Liberal Party and that group,” he said.
“If people want to put their own political views forward, they ought to be tolerant of the views of other groups.”
City News cannot independently verify the allegation but Mr Kidd’s partner said there are witnesses to the incident.
A spokesperson for the NSW Liberal Party categorically denied that such an altercation took place.
“That’s completely false,” the spokesperson said.
“At no point did any member of the Liberal Party float engage in a disrespectful manner.”