Australia’s most populous state would be led by its first conservative-leaning leader in many years, when the Liberal Party voted overwhelmingly in favor of Dominic Perrot to replace outgoing Premier Gladys Berejiklian.
Perrot, the party’s right-wing faction and critic of the lockdown, said it was a “new chapter” for the state of New South Wales (NSW).
“So far, all of our Liberal premiers have been infrastructure premiers—building roads, rail, schools and hospitals for communities across our state,” he told reporters in his first speech.
“That won’t change with me, but I will also be a family head, focusing on how we can make life better for working families, living the lofty values of opportunity, aspiration, and hard work.”
He won the leadership bid against friend and ally Rob Stokes, by a vote of five to 39, in a ballot earlier in the day, backed by a right-wing and influential liberal faction within the party.
“Our party room has made its choice and made it in a strong way,” Stokes wrote on Twitter. “I would like to congratulate my great friend Dom Perrot on being elected as our new leader and becoming NSW Premier.”
“The community now expects us to continue the work we have chosen to do and ensure that we overcome the pandemic and regain our freedom,” he said.
The devout Catholic and father of six will become the 46th person to head NSW and the youngest person ever at the age of 39.
After the surprise resignation of former Premier Berejiklian on 1 October, as well as two other state members of parliament, Perrot was forced to perform a cabinet reshuffle to climb to the top role, with 40-year-old former minister Stuart Ayres as deputy prime minister. was made minister. , and former environment minister (and moderate faction powerbroker) Matt Keane, 40, playing the role of treasurer.
Ayres is currently a member for Penrith (which is held by the Liberal Party on a slim margin), and promotion to deputy premier comes as electoral battle lines begin to be drawn for the rapidly growing western Sydney region, which Opposition leader Chris Minnes already has his eyes set.
Perrott told reporters he would likely stick to the state’s reopening plan after four months of strict lockdown, which would allow NSW to vaccinate between 70 and 80 percent of the population once fully reopening on 1 December. Let’s look at opening up some liberties first.
“While more challenging days are yet to come, there is light at the end of the tunnel,” he said.
“Our first priority will be to continue with the plan that we have started – keeping people safe, opening up the economy and securing our recovery,” he said.
Perrot has long been a critic of the lockdown. In July, it was reported that he told the state’s chief health officer, Kerry Chant, to take a pay cut if he wanted to go ahead with a strict lockdown in parts of Sydney.
She has also promised to include more women in the cabinet and to continue efforts for renewable energy development.
Parrot would allow a discretion vote on impending voluntary assisted dying laws, a move that would appease the Moderate faction.
Previously he had strongly opposed practices such as abortion, saying that supporters were on the “wrong side of history”, and against political correctness, particularly the use of gender pronouns in public service.
This News Originally From – The Epoch Times