Nats pre-select Port solicitor for Cowper
Conaghan vows to repay the party’s faith
I AM COMMITTED TO WORKING HARD FOR THE PEOPLE OF COWPER. PATRICK CONAGHAN, NATIONALS CANDIDATE FOR COWPER
PORT Macquarie solicitor Patrick Conaghan has prevailed in a four candidate pre-selection for the Federal seat of Cowper.
Mr Conaghan won the party's pre-selection ballot of members ahead of newsagent Chris Genders, electrician Jamie Harrison and pharmacist Judy Plunkett in Macksville.
“I want to thank the members of our party for the trust they've placed in me and I am committed to working hard for the people of Cowper,” Mr Conaghan said.
“I also want to thank Luke Hartsuyker for his years of service to the Party and our communities.”
NSW Nationals chairman Bede Burke said it was critical the people of Cowper continued to have a strong voice in Parliament and he believed Mr Conaghan was the right person for the job.
“Patrick Conaghan has already demonstrated a commitment to the community and has a desire to work hard for the people of Cowper,” Mr Burke said.
“It's important we continue to have a strong voice in Parliament. I'm confident Patrick will be another strong Nationals MP that will work hard for the people.”
Mr Conaghan will represent the party at next year's Federal Election after long-standing Coffs Harbour-based incumbent Luke Hartsuyker, who has held the seat for 17 years, announced his retirement at the next election.
All four party preselection candidates were based in Port Macquarie, making the Coffs Coast vote all important at the next election, with Labor Candidate Andrew Woodward based in the northern half of the electorate along with the Greens candidate Coffs Harbour City councillor Sally Townley.
Mr Conaghan's has previously worked as a Sydneybased solicitor, a police officer and a police prosecutor.
He will start campaigning safe in the knowledge that Cowper has been held by the Nationals and Country party for all but two years in its history.The four-way Port Macquarie-based preselection may prove a strong move for The Nationals considering that former independent member for Lyne, Rob Oakeshott who contested the last Federal election in Cowper is yet to confirm whether he will stand again.
The Nationals Coffs Harbour branch will meet in a fortnight’s time to preselect a candidate to replace Member for Coffs Harbour Andrew Fraser, who is retiring at the State Election on March 23 after 28 years in State Parliament.
The Nationals have preselected solicitor Patrick Conaghan.