Three in the running for Liberal preselection in Indi
LIBERAL Party members in Indi will meet at Wangaratta this Saturday to select their candidate for next year’s federal election.
Last month five preselection nominees were confirmed by the Liberals, being Stephen Brooks, Sheridan Leonard, Steven Martin, Dustin Perry and Andrew Walpole.
However, Ms Leonard - a human resources/program coordinator from Wodonga, and Mr Perry, a building project manager from Euroa, are out of the battle.
Both haven’t been party members for the mandatory 12 month period, and while they had sought dispensation from the requirement it was not granted.
Three all male contenders remain Mr Brooks, 35, a farmer and commodity trader from Yarrawonga; Mr Martin, 39, an engineer from Wodonga; and Mr Walpole, 62, an anaesthetist from Whorouly.
Mr Walpole along with Kevin Ekendahl were preselection candidates ahead of the 2016 election but lost out to Sophie Mirabella who was the Indi MP from 2001 until 2013.
Speculation had surrounded whether Ms Mirabella’s husband Greg would contend.
The Wangaratta farmer consid- ered his age a factor and said the Liberal candidate should be someone who could not only be the member for Indi but a future minister in a Coalition Government.
Indi Liberal chief Tony Schneider said the preselection convention would be held at Wangaratta High School from 12pm.
“We have a strong field of three people who will be contesting the preselection to be the Liberal Party candidate for Indi at the next federal election,” he said.
“All Liberal Party members in Indi are eligible to participate, which helps to guarantee the integrity and transparency of the process as well as maximising the likelihood of preselecting a candidate who will best connect with the voters of Indi.”
Preselection for Coalition partner, the Nationals, looks like taking place in February with former party candidate Marty Corboy saying he had not decided whether to nominate again.
“We performed well at the last federal election and I’m sure there will be a strong list of candidates early next year,” he said.
Current independent federal member Cathy McGowan (MHR, Indi) is yet to confirm if she will seek re-election for a potential third term in parliament.