Dominic Perrottet is expected to be crowned Prime Minister of NSW TODAY, but the father of six must beat one of his closest friends to take the top job
- Dominic Perrottet, 39, expected to be elected Prime Minister of NSW on Monday morning
- The NSW Liberal Banquet Hall will meet for a vote Tuesday at 10 a.m
- Prime Minister Gladys Berejiklian quit on Friday after ICAC announced an investigation
- Mr Perrottet’s close friend Rob Stokes is also contesting the leadership vote
Treasurer Dominic Perrottet is favorite to be crowned Prime Minister of NSW when the shocked Liberal MPs gather to choose Gladys Berejiklian’s replacement.
Mr Perrottet – from the right-wing faction of the NSW Liberals – will meet Planning Minister Rob Stokes in a banquet hall on Tuesday at 10 a.m. AEDT to vote for the leadership.
Ms Berejiklian quit on Friday after the state corruption watchdog said she was under investigation for possible breaches of public trust, given her five-year secret relationship with former MP Daryl Maguire.
Long touted as the prime minister in anticipation, the treasurer struck a deal with his moderate colleagues on Sunday to make Jobs Secretary Stuart Ayres his deputy and promote Environment Secretary Matt Kean to treasurer.
But Planning Minister Rob Stokes refuses to back down.
Dominic Perrottet, dressed in dark sunglasses, was spotted at his ministerial office in Sydney’s Martin Place on a public holiday.
Rob Stoles (pictured right with ministerial colleague Natalie Ward) has refused to bow to the leadership race for his good friend Dominic Perrottet
The Pittwater MP has offered himself as a more experienced alternative to 39-year-old Perrottet, arguing that he was the party’s best shot at winning the 2023 election.
“Dominic Perrottet is a good friend of mine. He has many great qualities. I just believe in terms of experience that I am offering more,” he told reporters on Monday.
But the 47-year-old has remained coy about his chances of winning leadership when the liberal banquet comes together.
“That’s up to my colleagues,” he said.
“I’m confident I have every chance of success, but after all, this is about giving choice to the people in the banquet hall.”
Perrottet played down his credentials on Monday while working alongside Ms Berejiklian as deputy leader, advocating for stability.
“As Gladys showed so well, leading a successful liberal and national government requires unity in our party’s ‘broad church’,” he wrote in an op-ed published Monday in The Daily Telegraph.
The father of six, who could be hours away from the next NSW Prime Minister, threw a grin at the photographers outside his office on Monday
Dominic Perrottet (center) will face good buddy Rob Stokes (right)
“We can only do that if we stay united, and maintain stability and continuity for the people of our state.”
Former Prime Minister and elder of the Liberal Party John Howard has supported Mr Perrottet saying he is driven and reform-oriented.
It comes as the NSW Nationals prepare for their own leadership contest.
The NSW government will have a brand new leadership team on Wednesday, after Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Nationals, John Barilaro, announced he would also leave parliament on Monday.
Paul Toole and Adam Marshall are expected to join Melinda Pavey in a three-way race to fill his position, with a ballroom vote on Wednesday.
Mr Barilaro’s resignation means the NSW government will face three by-elections in the coming months for the Willoughby, Bega and Monaro seats, after Transport Secretary Andrew Constance also announced on Sunday that he would be leaving to try to move to federal politics.
Dominic Perrottet spent the holiday hard working Monday to collect the numbers for the top job to be decided on Tuesday
Opposition leader Chris Minns on Monday reprimanded Mr Constance and Mr Barilaro for resigning during the pandemic.
“Having a new job or wanting to enter a new political arena is not a good reason to abandon your electorate and start a new career, especially during a pandemic,” he said.
Midterm elections cost more than $1.5 million each, he said, urging them to reconsider their decision to quit.