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Photo: Michael Masters/Getty Images

An Australian senator critcized by two prime ministers after striking a teenager who egged him and blaming Muslim immigration for the fatal Christchurch mosque attacks defiantly stands by his actions, Australian media report.

What he's saying: Sen. Fraser Anning held a wide-ranging press conference in Brisbane, Queensland, Monday afternoon local time in which he addressed the controversy head-on.

On the boy egger: "He got a slap across the face, which is what his mother should have given him long ago, because he's been misbehaving badly. When someone cracks you on the back of the head you react and defend yourself."

On a move to censure him in Parliament: "I hope it's not too painful."

On a petition to remove him from Parliament: "A million people from Australia — I am not sure they are all from Australia — but yes, a million have signed the petition. However, quite a lot of people have told us they're happy for me to stay where I'm at."

Go deeper

Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
21 mins ago - Economy & Business

The Fed could be firing up economic stimulus in disguise

Federal Reserve governor Lael Brainard at a "Fed Listens" event. Photo: Eric Baradat / AFP via Getty Images.

Even as global growth expectations increase and governments pile on fiscal spending measures central bankers are quietly restarting recession-era bond-buying programs.

Driving the news: Comments Tuesday from Fed governor Lael Brainard suggest the Fed may be jumping onboard the global monetary policy rethink and restarting a program used following the 2008 global financial crisis.

Democrats' hypocrisy moment

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios. Photo: Ray Tamarra/Getty Images

Gov. Andrew Cuomo should be facing explicit calls to resign from President Biden on down, if you apply the standard that Democrats set for similar allegations against Republicans. And it's not a close call.

Why it matters: The #MeToo moment saw men in power run out of town for exploiting young women. Democrats led the charge. So the silence of so many of them seems more strange — and unacceptable by their own standards — by the hour.

Police officers' immunity from lawsuits is getting a fresh look

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Nearly a year after the death of George Floyd, advocates of changes in police practices are launching new moves to limit or eliminate legal liability protections for officers accused of excessive force.

Why it matters: Revising or eliminating qualified immunity — the shield police officers have now — could force officers accused of excessive force to personally face civil penalties in addition to their departments. But such a change could intensify a nationwide police officer shortage, critics say.