Clive Palmer to help Craig Kelly take on Facebook, fight election05/27/2021
Mining magnate Clive Palmer could back former Liberal member Craig Kelly in a defamation claim against Facebook and may help finance his campaign at the next federal election.
The pair emerged from a meeting in Parliament House on Wednesday to signal their closer ties as the outspoken federal MP tries to overcome Facebook’s decision that he has spread misinformation about COVID-19.
Independent Craig Kelly has spoken to Clive Palmer about helping him fund a defamation claim against Facebook.Credit:Dominic Lorrimer/Getty Images
Mr Palmer has not made a commitment to pay for Mr Kelly’s campaign but it will be discussed as a way to help the now-independent MP hold the seat of Hughes in south-west Sydney.
“That’s something to discuss down the road,” Mr Kelly said.
“My intention is to run as an independent and give the absolute very best shot that I can. Obviously, election campaigns are expensive.”
Speaker Tony Smith ruled on Monday that Mr Kelly’s complaint against Facebook was not a matter for the privileges committee of the House of Representatives.
While Facebook chose to ban Mr Kelly’s posts because scientists reject his claims for medicines such as hydroxychloroquine, the Speaker ruled the ban was not directed at him in his role as a member of parliament.
Mr Kelly said he had spoken to lawyers about suing Facebook for defamation because its statement had made untruthful claims against him.
Mr Kelly asked Mr Palmer to contribute to a crowd-funding campaign to pay for the defamation action.
Mr Kelly said Mr Palmer told him he would consider it.
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