Australia: Outrage after PM "bullies" female journalist by challenging her to back up accusations

Link here. Excerpt:

'The female journalist asked the PM if he trusted the state government, which she said had been "proven to be corrupt".

Abbott reacted angrily to the question, lecturing the woman who asked it and suggesting she "withdraw".

"That is an entirely unjustified smear," Mr Abbott said.

"Let me not mince my words madam. An entirely unjustified smear. Frankly I think you should withdraw that and apologise because there is no evidence whatsoever."

In an odd reversal of roles the PM then challenged the reporter to produce evidence to support her claim.

Journalist Stephen Mayne questioned the PM's aggressive response on Twitter.

"What on earth is Tony Abbott doing going the knuckle like that against a female reporter in Western Sydney? Stop morally lecturing the media," he wrote.
...
"Abbott's bullying of a woman journalist - "Madam" - is par for the course. What an oaf he is," Mr Carlton posted.'

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"Men can bully women but not the other way around"

Or hadn't he heard?

If the reporter had been male, it'd be just another day at the shop. But no. Still, the PM could've been more diplomatic, genders aside. A brief "That's a serious allegation and simply put, where's the 'smoking gun'? If you or anyone else believes there's corruption or illegal behavior in my gov't, then present the evidence."

That would probably have done it. But it's easy for me to play Monday AM QB from over here on the opposite side of the planet, isn't it? :)

I thought Abott was a perfect gentleman

I have seen how aggressive journalists can be in Oz - and I thought Abbott was a perfect gentleman in his reply to the off the wall/gottcha-style question. Good for him. The only difference is I think he may have been tougher on a man.