Teen Who Egged Australian Lawmaker Fraser Anning Released, New GoFundMe Page Seeks to 'Buy More Eggs'

An Australian senator who blamed Muslim immigration for the attacks on two New Zealand mosques found himself with egg on his face — quite literally — after a teenager cracked an egg on the lawmaker's head during a Saturday press conference, leading the senator to punch the 17-year-old.

The brief fracas immediately went viral on social media, resulting in a successful fundraising effort to pay for the young man's legal fees, and for the purchase of additional eggs.

Queensland Senator Fraser Anning, an independent who has espoused far-right and anti-immigration views, was in Melbourne talking to television reporters about his widely-criticized statement when the teenager appeared behind him and cracked an egg on the back of his head.

Footage of the incident shows a stunned Anning turn around to throw two punches, connecting with the boy's face. Anning's supporters then scuffled with the young man while a staffer pulled the lawmaker away from the altercation.

Someone has just slapped an egg on the back of Australian Senator Fraser Anning's head, who immediately turned around and punched him in the face. @politicsabc @abcnews pic.twitter.com/HkDZe2rn0X

— Henry Belot (@Henry_Belot) March 16, 2019

A spokesperson from Victoria Police said the teen was apprehended and released. Videos of the altercation quickly spread on Twitter, where Anning's statement and the subsequent disavowals had introduced the fringe politician to a global audience just one day earlier.

On Saturday, a GoFundMe page dedicated to "Our Hero EggBoi" was created to buy the teen "more eggs" and pay for his "legal fees." The fundraiser, which has not been verified, had already more than doubled its original goal of $2,000.

Anning is now facing censure from colleagues over his response to the Christchurch massacre, which left at least 49 Muslims dead and scores more wounded during Friday prayers. An Australian white nationalist has been charged with the gruesome killings, which were livestreamed on Facebook. Police are investigating the possibility that other suspects may have been involved.

While most leaders expressed shock and horror at the act of terror, Anning took the opportunity to cast blame on Muslims and slam them as "the real cause of bloodshed."

"I am utterly opposed to any form of violence within our community, and I totally condemn the actions of the gunman," he wrote in the statement. "However, whilst this kind of violent vigilantism can never be justified, what it highlights is the growing fear within our community, both in Australia and New Zealand, of the increasing Muslim presence."

It continued: "The real cause of bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place. Let us be clear, while Muslims may have been the victims today, usually they are the perpetrators."

His comments earned swift and blistering condemnation. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison suggested Anning was unfit for office.

"In his conflation of this horrendous terrorist attack with issues of immigration, in his attack on Islamic faith specifically — these comments are appalling and they're ugly and they have no place in Australia, in the Australian Parliament," Morrison said. "He should be, frankly, ashamed of himself."

Meanwhile, Australian Labor party leader Bill Shorten suggested Anning's statement was a contrived — and successful — effort to garner attention from a global press. Anning had last found a wider audience when he invoked language used by Nazis during a customary speech as a newly elected leader.

"I do wonder if he's made Australians less safe overseas," Shorten said. "That's another reason not to give this fool any more oxygen."