Concetta Fierravanti-Wells gave Scott Morrison a budget nighttime shock — but he’s got his own surprise to come

Budget nights are usually carefully choreographed affairs. The regular speech, the pats on the back, the hustle and bustle of TV interviews, all capped off with handshakes and happy snaps at a party fundraiser.

However, Tuesday night’s routine included an unexpected cameo. Just an hour after Josh Frydenberg finished giving his House budget speech, Concetta Fierravanti-Wells stood in the Senate and launched a precision-guided missile at the Prime Minister. It was like Will Smith punched Chris Rock at the Oscars — not part of the plan.

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Watch Scott Morrison’s Full Concetta Fierravanti-Wells Devastating Nine-Minute Blast

The Liberal Senator, who failed to secure a winning spot on the NSW Liberal Senate ticket over the weekend, variously described the Prime Minister as “unfit for office”, an “autocrat” and a “bully” without a “moral compass”. She even suggested that Scott Morrison “used his so-called faith as a marketing advantage”.

Bullying claims cannot be brushed aside

At one time this could have been dismissed as a parting dummy of someone whose contempt for the Prime Minister is well known. Indeed, the disdain dates back 15 years to the messy pre-selection surrounding Morrison’s own entry into parliament.

But allegations of bullying are not so easily brushed aside these days. Just ask Anthony Albanian.

The Labor leader has been on the defensive in recent weeks over allegations that the late Senator Kimberley Kitching was being bullied. He declined to call an inquiry, noting that Kitching has not used the complaints procedure at her disposal. She played politically hard and “from time to time that can cause conflict”.

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