L’estrange: let election dust settle
CHURCHLANDS MLA Sean L’estrange has not ruled out contending for Liberal Party leadership after the devastating win by Labor at the State Election.
“I think it’s too early to talk about that, as there’s still votes to be counted and seats to be worked through,” Mr L’estrange told the Western Suburbs Weekly yesterday.
The now former mines, petroleum, finance and small business minister shares an electorate boundary with party heir-apparent and deputy leader Liza Harvey.
Mr L’estrange said he would “not speculate or comment” on being Ms Harvey’s deputy because he was supporting colleagues who had lost their jobs or still undecided seats.
The MPS still in trouble include mooted leadership aspirant and Jandakot MLA Joe Francis.
“Right now, we’re focusing on the scrutineering of ballots, including getting Joe Francis past the line,” Mr L’estrange said, when asked if there was a date for a party room meeting to decide leadership positions.
With 72 per cent of the vote counted in Churchlands, Mr L’estrange had 64.5 per cent of the twoparty preferred vote.
Mr L’estrange has a background in economics, teaching and the army with which he could tackle Mr Mcgowan’s dominant MPS.
However, on election night Mr L’estrange was coy when asked about other shadow areas or interests beyond his former portfolios.
“My focus remains in that area, until such time as we get together, and we review how things played out,” he said.
He said the party would wait until vote counting was complete before deciding shadow positions.
After the Liberal’s loss in 2001, former premier Richard Court failed in his attempt to parachute Curtin MHR Julie Bishop into the leadership, which eventually went to Cottesloe MLA Colin Barnett, who has flagged Ms Harvey as his replacement.
Ms Harvey managed to retain her seat with 55.06 per cent of the two-party preferred vote but did not comment on whether she would put herself forward for the Liberal Party leadership.
Ms Harvey was not available for interview at the time of going to print but sent a message of support to the people of Scarborough.
“I’d like to thank the people in the Scarborough electorate for their ongoing support, especially all the volunteers who helped out on Saturday,” she said.
“I love this area and I will continue to fight hard for our community in the WA Parliament.”
Churchlands MLA Sean L’estrange contemplates the election outcome.