FEDERAL election controversy has reached the Wimmera after a Katter's Australian Party candidate stepped down following controversial comments linking the rights of gays and paedophiles.
Tess Corbett, who was running for the federal seat of Wannon, sparked the controversy in an interview with the Hamilton Spectator when she said 'paedophiles will be next in line to be recognised in the same way as gays and lesbians and get rights'.
Katter's Australian Party national director Aidan McLindon told Fairfax Media Ms Corbett had decided to pull out of the race.
"Her heart was in the right place; she was well-intentioned," he said yesterday afternoon.
"But given what has happened in the last 24 hours she decided to voluntarily step down for the seat of Wannon."
A subsequent media release from Katter's Australian Party indicated Ms Corbett had 'withdrawn her application for endorsement in Western Australia'.
The seat for which she was running, Wannon, is in western Victoria and includes parts of the southern Wimmera.
Ms Corbett also told the Hamilton Spectator she did not 'want gays,
lesbians to be working in my kindergarten'.
The fate of Queensland Senate candidate Bernard Gaynor, who tweeted his support saying he did not want gay people teaching his children, remained unclear yesterday afternoon.
Ms Corbett's exit from the race came after party founder Bob Katter warned candidates would not be allowed to use the party as a soapbox on gay issues.
Caroline Tang and The Age