Christians have reflected negatively on the Victorian premiership of Daniel Andrews with The Catholic Weekly columnist Monica Doumit writing that his record sits as “the most anti-life, anti-religious and specifically anti-Catholic premier this country has seen in recent memory.”
The Director of Public Affairs and Engagement for the Catholic Archdiocese of Sydney notes that Victoria was the first Australian state to pass “extreme and barbaric” euthanasia laws. “His ban on so called conversion practices was so extreme that the legislation passed specifically referenced the outlawing of “prayer-based practices,” making Victoria the first jurisdiction in Australia — and perhaps the first of any jurisdiction, other than militant theocracies — to ban what someone can pray, and for whom they can pray.”
Ms. Doumit points out that Mr. Andrews was responsible for Victoria’s “exclusion zones,” punishing prayer outside abortion clinics with up to 12 months in prison. His government also enacted laws overriding legal protections for the seal of confession, threatening every priest who chose to uphold the sacramental seal, with imprisonment.
She writes in The Catholic Weekly that on his watch, religious freedoms were stripped from faith-based schools, health care and social services, greatly restricting their ability “to require an employee to uphold the faith of that institution, and giving Victoria’s judicial system the power to decide the circumstances in which religious faith and practice is important to a person’s role.”
The columnist calls the former premier’s reaction to the unanimous acquittal of Cardinal George Pell by the highest court in the land as “disgraceful.” “He would not comment on the fact that Victoria Police set their sights on an innocent man and even advertised for potential “victims” to come forward, even when no complaint had been made against him.” She noted Mr. Andrews also publicly backed the sacking of Andrew Thorburn from the Essendon Football Club, simply because Mr. Thorburn attended a church that preached Christian views on life and marriage.
She appealed “Please God, let his successor not be so openly hostile to human life, marriage and family and to the Christian faith.”
The National Director of Politics at the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) Wendy Francis lamented that during Daniel Andrews’ premiership: “He’s led the way in the nation to restrict freedom of faith, certainly led the way in locking down people’s freedom of expression. He oversaw the legalisation of abortions to birth, and euthanasia. He has completely trounced parental rights, certainly in the way that he has introduced gender fluid indoctrination into our kids’ schools. Children in Victoria are allowed to change their sex without their parents’ consent. He has overseen that. He even went so far in the conversion therapy laws to criminalise prayer, even if somebody asks for prayer for gender confusion or same sex attraction. For somebody to actually do that and pray for that person, even at their request, is a criminal offence in in Victoria. These things all came in under his leadership.”
ACL Victorian State Director Jasmine Yuen said: “During COVID he locked Victorians in their houses, and even allowed them to be shot at with rubber bullets. There will be many who are not sorry to see his time at the top end.”
Christian UAP Senator for Victoria Ralph Babet said in a statement: “This megalomaniac locked down our state for a shocking 262 days and caused immeasurable pain which many of us are still suffering today. School closures had a devastating effect on children. More than 50% suffered a decline in mental health, almost twice the national average.”
Sky News host and Tony Abbott’s former Chief of Staff when he was Prime Minister, Peta Credlin observed: “Who can ever forget the Andrews’ legacy of gender fluid primary school kids, biological men in women’s prisons; an Indigenous treaty commission that Victorians never voted for, drug injecting rooms, and the all-but-cancellation of Australia Day? That’s before we even get into Victoria’s crime crisis, with home invasions, violent assaults, carjackings and youth crime on the sort of scale you might expect in Johannesburg or South America, not here in Australia.”
The Australian Financial Review reports his changes also made Victoria the highest taxing state and the hardest place to do business in Australia as “he leaves the state with crippling debt – headed towards $200 billion – while other states have brought their debts under control.”
Back in 2021, former ACL Managing Director Martyn Iles wrote: “Nobody in this country has a more radical and aggressive social engineering agenda than Daniel Andrews. I hope you can see, as a person of faith, that Daniel Andrews despises what you believe. He has a passion against it that has driven him for years now and he’s getting worse, not better.”
Nearly three years later, Mr. Iles has posted on social media: “Despite being a very vocal critic of Daniel Andrews, I am not nearly as excited by his resignation as I thought I would be. I think it’s because Andrews isn’t so much *the* problem as he is a symptom of the problem. The reality is, Australian politics is so far gone that his departure will change very little. The basic direction of things will continue. Truly, the hope for Australia is not political. You cannot be as close to politics as I have been and fail to see that. It is shot.”
Now in his new roles as Chief Ministry Officer for Answers in Genesis and its Managing Director for Australia, he reflects: “The real hope for Australia is the hope that was offered to Nineveh – repent, and return to God, before it’s too late.”
He concludes with Psalm 146:3-6
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