Barnett: I will remain Premier
Barnett COTTESLOE MLA Colin Barnett is confident he will remain Premier despite big swings to Labor in some Federal Election booths and speculation about his leadership before his winter holidays from Friday.
“There is not going to be a change in leadership. I can’t see any sign of it. I’ve raised the issue in the party room, I’ve given people the opportunity if they want to put their hand up. No one has,” Mr Barnett said.
Those mentioned for WA’s top job have been minsters Liza Harvey, Dean Nalder, Mike Nahan and Joe Francis.
Mr Barnett said he had “absolute support” to continue as Liberal Party leader, but would still “do the right thing” and step down if the party believed there was someone to do that.
This week, he met 15 of his MPs to discuss what was claimed be either leadership rumblings or the 2017 State election campaign.
“There are people in the part who are potential leaders into the future and I want that, and I admire ambition, but when I came into politics I said I wanted to be Premier and it took a long time, 17 years,” Mr Barnett said.
He said he did “not read much” into results, including booth swings of up 10.9 per cent to Labor in federal electorates covering some of his MPs’ seats, because getting a fourth State term after a high Liberal vote in 2013 would always be “difficult”.
“And when you consider overall the Liberal twoparty preferred vote will be 54 per cent, or close to it, and the Labor’s primary vote was only about 32-33 per cent, if I was Opposition leader Mark McGowan I would be more worried,” Mr Barnett said.