14 October 1986

ROBERT PENFOLD | US Correspondent | Contact

Prime Minister Bob Hawke has expressed concern for his political opponent, former PM Malcolm Fraser, after reports emerged that Fraser lost his pants somewhere in Memphis while under the influence of alcohol.

Hawke, who famously enjoyed a drink or two before his time in office, expressed his dismay at Fraser’s behaviour, stating that it was a clear sign of a man who was struggling with his mental health.

“It’s a sad day for Australian politics when a former leader like Malcolm Fraser can’t handle his grog,” Hawke said in a statement to the press. “I’m genuinely worried about his mental state, and I urge him to seek help before it’s too late. You can’t be getting that drunk in public without something being wrong upstairs.”

Fraser, who famously opposed Hawke’s Labor government during the 1980s, has been relatively quiet in recent years. However, reports emerged last week that he had been spotted drinking heavily in Memphis, Tennessee, and had allegedly lost his pants in a bar.

Sources close to Fraser have downplayed the incident, stating that he was simply blowing off steam. However, Hawke remains unconvinced, stating that the incident was a clear sign that Fraser was struggling to cope with life outside of politics.

“I know what it’s like to be in the public eye, and it can be tough,” Hawke said. “But losing your pants in a bar? That’s a whole other level of madness. He must’ve started on rum. He’s also a Victorian and we all know they can’t drink like the rest of us.”

Despite Hawke’s concerns, Fraser has yet to respond to the allegations. In the meantime, Hawke has urged his fellow Australians to show compassion for their former leader, stating that he deserves to be treated with respect, even if he has lost his pants in Memphis.

Hawke also called on the people of Memphis to return Mr Fraser’s pants in one piece.

“They’re from Anthony Squires. They would’ve cost well over $20. If you see them, please return them to the Australian Embassy in Washington D.C.”

More to come.


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