Derryn Hinch has called his former partner a "bunny boiler" after she revealed the senator, who received a liver transplant in 2011, is drinking again.
Hinch admitted he had fallen off the wagon after his former partner tweeted on Sunday night that the senator had been "back on the booze" for more than 12 months.
"So much for respecting organ donor's gift of life. Fav wine, cheap Gossips. No loyalty," Natasha Chadwick said, prompting a front page story in Melbourne's Herald Sun on Tuesday.
Gossips retails for as little as $3.80 a bottle.
Chadwick has since deleted the tweets, saying she stooped to Hinch's level in anger, and that's not her style.
Hinch says his relationship with Chadwick broke down less than 48 hours ago.
In a statement released via Twitter on Monday evening, Hinch tweeted, "HHNF. Hell hath no fury", in reference to Chadwick attempting to "blacken his name".
In a statement, Hinch admitted he enjoyed the occasional "watered down" glass of wine with his doctor's permission.
"It is true that, even though the Senate dining room and the Hyatt Canberra now stock my Edenvale non-alcoholic wine, I have been known to occasionally drink real wine with the permission of my transplant surgeon Professor Bob Jones," Hinch said.
"I am not stupid, I have interviewed Alex Best, widow of George Best. He jumped the queue for a liver transplant. Was arrested for drinking and driving eighteen months later and was dead within two years."
"I have so much to achieve in the Senate, I won't be making that mistake. I'm sorry that a break-up has led to this, but that's life."
Hinch spoke passionately about organ donation - even thanking the family of the man whose liver he received in 2011 - in his maiden speech to the Senate last week.
"Without a donated liver, I would not be here and, to be blunt, my funeral would have been held five years ago. That is why I want to help trigger the signing up of one million more organ donors in Australia," he said.
Hinch received the liver from 27-year-old Heath Gardner, a bikie associate and known drug user who died from a gunshot wound in 2011.
Gardner's sister Kimberly said on Tuesday that while Hinch's actions concerned her, the senator still had her support.
"Alcoholism is a tough addiction to kick. Although Derryn came very close to his own death, I suppose it is very easy to fall back into your old ways. I continue to stand by Derryn and support him as a human being.
"It is upsetting to think he may be polluting my brother's liver. I have all faith in Derryn and the choices and decisions he will continue to make in the future."
On Tuesday morning, Hinch opened an interview with radio station 3AW by asking the host if he wanted a glass of wine.
Hinch said he was getting the "bunny boiler" treatment from his ex - a reference to Glenn Close's character in Fatal Attraction, who boils her ex's pet rabbit.
"I was told, 'I'll get you', and my ex-partner was has got me," he said. "She's achieved what she wanted to... putting me under the spotlight and embarrassing me."
Hinch said he'd enjoyed a light beer after his maiden speech last week and enjoys an occasional watered down wine "once or twice a week".
"If I was back being a piss pot and drinking every day, that would be a disgrace," Hinch said. "I'd end up being dead and I don't want that. I'm sure if my surgeon thought I was a risk, he wouldn't have given me the green light."
Hinch, who has been married five times, said his current troubles with Chadwick also breaks his perfect streak of getting on with former partners.
Rob Stott is a news editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in Sydney.
Contact Rob Stott at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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