WEST Australian Opposition Leader Matt Birney suggested yesterday that the Pope was married – a blunder that shocked even his Liberal colleagues.
In a case of either sheer ignorance or dreadful taste, Mr Birney was last night refusing to apologise for the gaffe he made while defending his decision to take his girlfriend on a taxpayer-funded trip to Greece.
Asked by a caller on ABC talkback radio whether it would be appropriate to take his partner to meet the Pope, Mr Birney replied: "It’s a very hypothetical question. If it were the sort of function where it was appropriate to have partners there, ie, if the Pope happened to have his partner there, then yes, absolutely," he replied, seemingly unaware of the Catholic clerical vow of celibacy. [Source]