Liberal storm over candidates to take on Steggall, Kelly in NSW seats – The Sydney Morning Herald

Posted: November 25, 2021 at 11:45 am

Mr Hawke is said to have put a proposal to colleagues to have a speedy decision on the seat of Hughes in south-west Sydney so state MP Melanie Gibbons could be confirmed as the candidate.

The Liberals are hoping for a strong candidate in the blue-ribbon seat to take it back from Mr Kelly, the former Liberal who quit the party in February after a storm over his controversial views on coronavirus cures, later joining the UAP and its founder, mining magnate Clive Palmer.

NSW Premier Dominic Perrottet is said to be unhappy with Ms Gibbons decision to leave state Parliament and force a by-election in order to switch to federal politics.

Mr Hawke is so close to Mr Morrison that many Liberals in the NSW division believe the Prime Minister supports the push to stop open plebiscites and wants to install candidates such as Mr Constance in Gilmore and Ms Gibbons in Hughes.

The party is struggling to agree on the best candidate to run against Ms Steggall in Warringah, the seat previously held by former prime minister Tony Abbott but considered a major challenge for the Liberals after being held by an independent for almost three years.

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Liberal storm over candidates to take on Steggall, Kelly in NSW seats - The Sydney Morning Herald

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