MILDURA’S top Liberal says branch members would prefer a Mallee candidate with a stronger local connection than Peta Credlin.
It follows an Australian Financial Review report that senior state Liberal Party figures were encouraging Ms Credlin, the former prime ministerial chief of staff, to run for Mallee.
Mildura branch president Russell Lamattina said he was seeking confirmation from party figures in Melbourne about what plans, if any, were afoot.
Asked if branch members would be receptive to Ms Credlin as a candidate, Mr Lamattina said someone who had lived in Mallee for most of their working career would be preferable.
Ms Credlin, now a Sky News commentator, was born in Wycheproof but has spent most of her adult life between Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra.
“In the end it’s up to all the members of the Mallee, but our branch would more than likely be keen to push a local person who has been in the region for multiple years,” Mr Lamattina said.
“We’ll be pushing for someone who’s been in the region and understands local issues.”
Liberal Party preselection for Mallee opens next Tuesday.
The Australian Financial Review report claimed sources close to Ms Credlin said she was waiting to see who The Nationals candidate was before making a call.
“If they choose a bloke or a weak female candidate, she will run,” a conservative source was quoted as saying.
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