Hanson dismisses anti-racism protesters at campaign launch


Pauline Hanson says protesters who targeted her campaign launch in Brisbane overnight were trying to shut down freedom of speech.

Pauline Hanson has disregarded anti-racism protesters who tried to derail her Queensland Senate campaign launch, saying they are trying to stifle freedom of speech.

The launch, held at a bowls club in Brisbane on Friday night, was targeted by about 50 protesters who chanted and jeered outside as guests arrived.

Protester Carl Jackson said the group wanted to stand side by side with "all the people who bear the brunt of the kind of racism that Pauline Hanson and her motley crew whip up".

Inside, Ms Hanson spruiked One Nation policies, including economic, welfare and immigration platforms.

Before the event began, several protesters had secretly made their way inside and sprang up to abuse the crowd of about 150 before being kicked out.

"I disregard that," Ms Hanson later told AAP.

"My concern is for the people here that had to go through that."

She said the protesters were selectively attempting to stop freedom of speech.

"That's a shame that our country's got to that stage."

Ms Hanson frequently weathers criticism for policies viewed as racist, such as a ban on wearing the burqa in public and a royal commission into Islam.

She told her supporters Australia had reached a population of 24 million in March this year - 17 years ahead of predictions.

"We've got to close the gate," she said.

But Ms Hanson rejected that she was "anti-immigration", saying her policy was a "zero-net immigration" stance that would merely replace those who left.

"Where is the money coming from to build the infrastructure to provide for this increased population?" she said.

One Nation is fielding 30 candidates for the July 2 poll.

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