‘ I won’t desert Pauline’

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - - NEWS - AN­NIKA SMETHURST

PAULINE Han­son’s last re­main­ing se­na­tor Peter Ge­or­giou has de­nied spec­u­la­tion he is con­sid­er­ing join­ing the Na­tional Party.

The con­tro­ver­sial One Na­tion leader has been left with just two votes in the Se­nate af­ter NSW se­na­tor Brian Burston de­fied her by vow­ing to vote for the Coali­tion’s com­pany tax cut pack­age.

Cross­bench sen­a­tors told The Sun­day Tele­graph that Mr Ge­or­giou was “equally as upset as Brian” and was look­ing at all his op­tions.

“His chances of be­ing re­elected are not all that great and I know he is un­happy,” one cross­bench se­na­tor said.

But a spokesman for Mr Ge­or­giou de­nied the claim, say­ing he would stand by his em­bat­tled party leader Pauline Han­son.

A se­nior Na­tional Party MP told The Sun­day Tele­graph there had been no for­mal ap­proach from the Na­tion­als.

How­ever, he did not rule out the pos­si­bil­ity.

For­mer One Na­tion se­na­tor Rod Cul­leton said he was also aware that his es­tranged brother-in-law was con­sid­er­ing de­fect­ing to the Coali­tion.

“I have heard about him jump­ing ship,” Mr Cul­leton, who is mar­ried to Mr Ge­or­giou’s sis­ter Ioanna, said.

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