Barnett:Stronger after challenge
Barnett CONSTITUENTS have stuck with Cottesloe MLA Colin Barnett following the failed premiership challenge from Dean Nalder last month.
“I particularly appreciated the dozens of text messages I got from local constituents supporting me, encouraging me, and people just stopping me in the street and saying ‘Well done’, ‘Good luck’ and ‘We back you’. So some good comes out of it,” Mr Barnett said.
A 31-15 party room vote not to spill Mr Barnett’s leadership bid stopped first-term Mr Nadler, who had the prime transport and agriculture portfolios.
“I just think it’s a great pity he just did not concentrate on proving himself to be a good and effective minister, and to try and make a tilt for the leadership in your first term was just unrealistic. I hope he does have a future, and I hope he does stay in politics,” Mr Barnett said.
Mr Barnett said he took a “philosophical” view of the bid after eight years in the State’s top job.
However, a third of the party room did want to test the water of his leadership.
“Two-thirds weren’t interested, and I’d say of the 15 people who voted for a spill there would be several amongst them who just though it was just a good idea to have a vote but they would have actually supported me at the end,” Mr Barnett said.
He is now “quietly confident” about the March State Election.
“So Members of Parliament are nervous, and they can see the polls probably favoured Labor, although I think it’s probably very close now,” Mr Barnett said.
He clarified that any presumption bad polls after the leadership fiasco could prompt his departure.
“Look I haven’t said that, and that’s misconstrued. What I have said is I’ll always do the right thing by the Liberal Party. Now interpret what you want out of that,” he said
“I think the die is cast. I’m the leader, and I think there’s not much doubt at all I will lead the party into the next election.”