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Neil Mitchell defends the ‘best journalist in Australia’ over ‘obscenely unfair and insulting’ criticism

Neil Mitchell has launched a fierce defence of Andrew Rule after the Walkley-award winning journalist was bizarrely accused of racism.

Speaking on Channel 7, Rule, a horse racing fan, was discussing Vow and Declare’s win in the Melbourne Cup.

He referenced the locally-bred winner as being the horse that “grew here, not flew here” – with the Cup now attracting runners from all over the world.

But that comment sparked anger online.

ABC journalist Osman Faruqi led the outrage brigade, tweeting “the culture is so racism poisoned we’re being xenophobic about racehorses.”

Senior Labor MP Martin Pakula hit back, expressing his shock that supporting a local horse was “apparently racist” now.

“We have actually gone through the looking glass, jumped the shark, and entered the twilight zone,” Mr Pakula wrote in response.

Neil Mitchell said Mr Pakula was right, almost laughing at the suggestion Rule was racist.

“I know Andrew’s history and his heart,” Neil Mitchell said.

“He grew up with Aboriginal kids.

“There is no less racist person in the world.

“To go after him as a ‘racist’ is obscenely unfair and insulting.

“Now, if I know Andrew, he will play all this down – I won’t.

“I don’t know of a more decent person in journalism.”

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