Here is Stephanie Banister of Brisbane, who hopes to win a seat in Australia’s Parliament for the fringey, anti-immigrant One Nation Party. In an interview Wednesday with Channel 7 News, she said, “I don’t oppose Islam as a country, but I do feel that their laws should not be welcome here in Australia,” because after all, only 2% of Australians “follow haram.” Reporter Erin Edwards clarified that Banister probably meant “the Koran,” but we’re inclined to think she meant “sharia,” like such as. “Haram” means “sinful” and is kind of the opposite of “halal;” she might as well have said that only 2% of Aussies follow treyf.

Her differently factual approach to politics is winning her comparisons to Sarah Palin, and while she has yet to gain a national following willing to throw money at her, she’s already learned one vital lesson from the Snowbilly Grifter: Banister is blaming the media for making her look bad, what with all those unflattering direct quotations.

In addition to being OK with the country of Islam as long as they aren’t shoving haram down people’s throats, Banister would like to see halal food banned. No need for a similar ban on kosher food, though, since “Jews aren’t under haram, they have their own religion which follows Jesus Christ.”

Asked what she thought of a major issue in the election, the National Disability Insurance Scheme, Banister said she believes it’s “working at the moment,” although the program doesn’t actually go into effect until 2016.

And she also didn’t know the names of either of her opponents for the seat she hopes to win.

Banister’s electoral hopes may be crushed, however, since she faces charges of product tampering after slapping stickers reading “Beware! Halal food funds terrorism!” on products at a shopping center. If she’s found guilty, she would be disqualified from running. Hey, Australia, haven’t you ever heard of a little thing called the First Amendment???

Following a solid day of mockery and comparisons to Miss Teen South Carolina, Banister complained that the Channel 7 interview had been misleadingly edited, deleting several places where she corrected herself:

“Unfortunately, they’ve completely twisted all my words and made me out to be a stand-up criminal and a stupid moron,” she said.

She said she knew Islam was not a country and meant to say “Islamic countries.”

When asked if she meant to say that 2 per cent of Australians followed haram, she replied: “Yes. Up to 2.5 per cent.”

Oh, yes, she’s┬ádefinitely been studying the Sage of Wasilla.

[The Age / Guardian / Gawker via the tipline]

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