“Legacy is for other people to determine.” So said Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, in Tuesday’s press conference announcing his resignation.
Much ink will be spilled and many column inches dedicated to his legacy in the weeks and months ahead.
But beside the list of Dan’s accomplishments needs to sit his record as the most anti-life, anti-religious and specifically anti-Catholic premier this country seen in recent memory.
Let’s start with euthanasia. Victoria was the first Australian state in the country to pass these extreme and barbaric laws.
The former premier’s prediction that there would be “a dozen or so” euthanasia deaths in the first year of the law’s operation was woefully and, dare I say, intentionally understated, with deaths in the first year ten times that prediction, and increasing year on year since.
Then there’s his ban on so-called conversion practices, which 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.
Speaking of banning what someone can pray, Mr Andrews was also responsible for Victoria’s “exclusion zones,” punishing prayer outside abortion clinics with up to 12 months in prison.
He was also responsible for laws overriding legal protections for the seal of confession, threatening every priest who chooses to uphold the sacramental seal with imprisonment.
Then there were the December 2022 laws that stripped religious freedoms from faith-based schools, health care and social services, greatly restricting the ability for a faith-based institution 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.
While we are on the topic of Victoria’s “judicial” system, who can forget the former premier’s disgraceful reaction to the unanimous acquittal of Cardinal George Pell by the highest court in the land?
Mr Andrews 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, nor that the full bench of the Victorian Supreme Court failed to overturn what even a first-year law student could see was a rubbish conviction.
He also publicly backed the sacking of Andrew Thorburn from Essendon Football Club, simply because Mr Thorburn attended a church that preached Christian views on life and marriage, clearly demonstrating that for all his talk of “tolerance,” Mr Andrews refused to tolerate people of sincere, Christian faith.
Please God, his successor will not be so openly hostile to human life, marriage and family and to the Christian faith, and that the future will see the Andrews premiership as an aberration, not a baseline.