CANBERRA (XINHUA) - Three-quarters of Australians have called on Prime Minister Scott Morrison to censure one of his MPs for spreading misinformation about the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a poll published by think tank Australia Institute on Monday (Jan 18).
Mr Craig Kelly, an MP from Mr Morrison's Liberal Party had shared posts on social media earlier in January likening mask mandates for children to child abuse.
"Forcing children to wear masks is causing massive physical and psychological harm - that can only be defined as child abuse," he wrote.
Under rules across Australia, children 12 years and under are exempt from wearing face masks.
In a survey that sampled 1,003 Australians last Thursday and Friday, about 76 per cent of Australians agreed that Mr Morrison "has a responsibility to clearly and publicly criticise this politician and correct the misinformation". Just over 10 per cent of the sample disagreed.
The poll also found that disapproval of Mr Kelly was strong across party lines, with 77 per cent of coalition voters agreeing that he should be censured.
In the wake of Mr Kelly's comments, the peak body for Australian doctors, the Australian Medical Association (AMA), called on Mr Morrison to publicly condemn Mr Kelly and others who were "torching the foundation of community health and science".
"Hopefully we can get the leaders being very strong and clear in their advice and strong about supporting science," AMA vice-president Chris Moy said.
Meanwhile, the poll published on Monday also found that 56 per cent of respondents agreed that Mr Morrison should criticise or condemn outgoing US President Donald Trump for his role in inciting the Capitol Hill riots.
Mr Morrison condemned participants in the riots for the "terribly distressing" scenes but has not addressed Mr Trump's role.