Dutton to be LNP leader as Andrews rules out leadership position

Gold Coast MP Karen Andrews has ruled herself out of the race for a leadership position in the Coalition, confirming she expects Peter Dutton to become Opposition Leader.

Ms Andrews had reportedly been urged to consider running for the leadership in the wake of the Coalition’s election loss.

She later confirmed she was considering putting her hand up for the deputy leadership.


ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER THIS ADVERTISEMENT


But the McPherson MP has confirmed this morning that she will not be contesting either position.

“It’s very clear that Peter Dutton will be elected as leader unopposed and most likely that Susan Ley will become the deputy leader,” MS Andrews told Seven.

“It’s very important that they work across the party, that they work with whoever goes into the shadow ministry to make sure that we are all part of the leadership of the party because no single person can get this right.

Ms Andrews says it wouldn’t be tenable for the party to have a leader and deputy leader both from Queensland.

Moncrieff MP Angie Bell has also thrown her support behind Mr Dutton as leader.

“I think he’s very popular in Queensland and the party, he’s very popular in the party room, and he’s a man who’s approachable. He’s a man that’s inclusive and I don’t that’s necessarily always been portrayed to the public,” Ms Bell told Nine Radio.

Meantime, it’s claimed some Liberal colleagues discussed a leadership coup last year.

The Age reports former Treasurer Josh Frydenberg was approached by colleagues to challenge Scott Morrison for the leadership in September, amid concerns Mr Morrison was damaging the Coalition’s re-election chances.

Ms Andrews says she wasn’t part of those discussions.

“I wasn’t one of the MPs that approached Josh Frydenberg. Would it have made a difference? We can only speculate about that at the moment.

“We know that there were a number of factors that meant that people did not support the re-election of the coalition government. The Prime Minister was clearly of concern in some seats but also I think we’ve got to recognize that many women, in particular, educated women who have been traditional Liberal Party supporters, did not support us at the last election.”