18 April, 2024
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Dutton, Ley take over reins of federal Liberal Party

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Peter Dutton has been elected unopposed as the new leader of the Liberal Party.

Mr Dutton’s deputy will be former environment minister Sussan Ley.

She also faced no opposition for the position at a meeting of the Liberal party room in Canberra on Monday. The result of the leadership vote was announced just 10 minutes into the meeting.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Scott Morrison, the outgoing leader, for his service and his leadership of our party over the past three and a half years, and Josh Frydenberg as the outgoing deputy,” outgoing chief government whip Bert van Manen said.

“Sadly Josh couldn’t be here, given the result in Kooyong. But he has provided tremendous service to the party as the deputy leader and treasurer over the past three and a half years.”

Elsewhere, the Nationals’ meeting in Canberra to decide their new leadership is heading into its third hour. Former deputy PM Barnaby Joyce faces a challenge from his deputy, David Littleproud, and Victorian MP Darren Chester.

Mr Dutton had been touted as the likely replacement for former PM Scott Morrison when he quit as leader following the May 21 election loss. He is the first Queenslander to lead the Liberal Party.

Mr Dutton is expected to address the media later on Monday.

Stuart Robert endorses Peter Dutton

10 News First – Disclaimer

Channel 10

Shortly after the vote, Mr Morrison congratulated Mr Dutton and Ms Ley and said they were “deeply committed to both the Liberal cause and the cause of the nation”.

“I think they’ll do an outstanding job and I look forward to giving them all of my full support,” he said.

“It’s been a great privilege to leave the federal parliamentary Liberal Party and I handed over to Peter and Susan and wish them all the very best.”

Mr Morrison refused to answer questions about how long he might stay on in parliament.

Earlier, fellow Queensland Liberal Stuart Robert said he backed Mr Dutton – the former defence minister – and Ms Ley.

“[I’m] super happy about the party room and the leadership team we’re bringing in,” he said.

Mr Robert also said he expected there would be more women on the Liberal front bench, following a reshuffle after former ministers – including then treasurer Josh Frydenberg – lost their seats on May 21.

“We’ve got so many talented women in our ranks and you’d expect that talent to be recognised and rewarded,” he told Sky News.

“So absolutely, I’d expect far more women just because of the calibre of the women in the Liberal and National parties.”

Mr Robert also fended off criticism of Mr Dutton, as a hard-line conservative.

“He is well-read, well-learned, has a beautiful family and a soft heart. I think Australian voters will be very surprised by the Peter Dutton they see,” he said.

Mr Dutton, a former police officer, spruiked his credentials for the job of opposition leader following his nomination.

“In a prime minister you need someone who won’t buckle in hard times and will stand up for our country and I have proven that in the portfolios I’ve had,” he wrote on Facebook.

“My work ethic is second to none and I have the skill and experience having served five leaders and have learnt from each.”

Mr Dutton has pledged to take the party back to its core values and represent the aspirational “forgotten people” of Australia.

“We aren’t the Moderate Party. We aren’t the Conservative Party. We are Liberals,” the post said.

Elizabeth Watson-Brown, the new Greens MP for the Brisbane seat of Ryan, said voters won’t be “enamoured” by Mr Dutton.

“The Liberal Party does need to do some soul searching,” she told the ABC.

“The general sense was that their campaign was sort of pretty disgraceful, there was a lot of culture-war baiting (and) inaction on climate change,” she said.

“The voters of Ryan will not necessarily have a particularly benign view of Peter Dutton.”

-with AAP

The post Dutton, Ley take over reins of federal Liberal Party appeared first on The New Daily.

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