• In short: Australia’s former high commissioner to the United Kingdom, George Brandis, cautioned politicians against criticising diplomatic appointments.
  • On Wednesday, former US president Donald Trump said he had heard Kevin Rudd “was a little bit nasty”.
  • What’s next? The Coalition has questioned Dr Rudd’s tenure, suggesting he will not be able to work with Mr Trump if he is returned to the White House later this year.
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    23 months ago

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    The federal opposition’s rush to jump on US presidential hopeful Donald Trump’s character assessment of Australia’s envoy in Washington could erode his standing in the capital, a former senior diplomat has warned.

    During an interview with British politician-turned-broadcaster Nigel Farage, Mr Trump said he had heard Dr Rudd “was a little bit nasty” and “not the brightest bulb”.

    The comments were prompted by Dr Rudd’s own turn of phrase, prior to becoming ambassador to the US, when he described Mr Trump as a “destructive president” and a “traitor to the West”.

    George Brandis served as Australia’s high commissioner to the United Kingdom from 2018 to 2022, after almost two decades as a Liberal senator for Queensland where he became one of the most senior politicians in the party.

    “I know Nigel Farage, he’s a charming charlatan, who’s building a reputation as a broadcaster in the United States,” Mr Brandis quipped.

    Prime Minister Anthony Albanese lashed out at critics of Dr Rudd, as the federal Opposition Leader Peter Dutton urged him to take Mr Trump’s critique seriously.


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