MP resigns after ‘sugar baby’ claims
Nationals MP Andrew Broad has resigned from his position as Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister over sordid allegations published in New Idea this morning.
The site reported Mr Broad had been using the "sugar baby" website SeekingArrangement to meet younger women on work trips.
Nationals leader Michael McCormack issued a statement thanking Mr Broad for his service and said the resignation was appropriate due to the nature of the allegations made.
He also stressed the matter may also be subject to future investigation and further media comment on such detail was not appropriate.
The New Idea story suggests the married politician used the "seeking arrangements" website to meet younger girls while he was away on work trips.
Amy, who uses the online alias "Sweet Sophia Rose", revealed to New Idea how she met up with Mr Broad at the expensive Aqua restaurant in Hong Kong.
Despite putting in her profile that she would not be intimate on dates, Amy claims Mr Broad suggested he had booked a room for them.
"He kept grabbing my hand and putting it on his leg, so I excused myself and went to the bathroom and when I came back I told him I was leaving," she told the magazine.
Amy also suggested Mr Broad lied about his age and kept referring to himself as James Bond.
"I don't think someone like that should be in a position of power and making decisions for the country while being so deceiving himself," she said.
In response to New Idea's story, Mr Broad said Amy "may have engaged in criminal activity" and he had reported the matter to the Australian Federal Police.
Seeking Arrangement is a notorious website that aims to match men with younger women. The men then spend money on the women in exchange for their company.
Earlier this year, we reported that more than 100,000 Australian university students had signed up to the site. It explicitly targets students, offering "relief" to those with large debts or HECS payments.
I took this photo of Deputy PM Michael McCormack at an event about 10 minutes before Andrew Broad resigned over “sugar baby” scandal . Suspect he and his adviser might have been reading New Idea article about the scandal? #auspol pic.twitter.com/9G34GTj2Se— Sarah Gerathy (@sarahgerathy) December 17, 2018
Mr Broad had only been in his position as assistant minister since September and Mr McCormack said a replacement would be made and announced in due course.
He will continue in his role as the member for Mallee, which he has held since 2013.
Mr Broad made headlines in 2016 after opposing same-sex marriage and comparing the relationships to those between frisky rams.
"I think a bicycle is not a tricycle, and relationships can have different names," he said.
"I can put the rams in a paddock and they might mount one another, but no lambs will come out."
He also called for former Nationals leader Barnaby Joyce to resign after it was revealed the MP was expected a baby with his former staffer.