Former Liberal MP rumoured to want Hunt’s seat


Former Liberal MP Julia Banks is rumoured to be considering standing against her former colleague, Flinders MP Greg Hunt in this year’s federal election.

Ms Banks told The News two weeks ago that she had yet to make up her mind “on my next steps”.

Mr Hunt, the health minister, has held Flinders for the Liberals since 2001.

The seat was previously held for the party by Peter Reith.

The Labor Party is expected this week to announce the name of its candidate for the election expected in May.

Recent polling reported by a Melbourne daily newspaper last weekend showed support for Mr Hunt was declining, particularly for his backing of Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton in the Liberal upheaval which saw Malcolm Turnbull replaced as prime minister Scott Morrison.

Mr Hunt had sought to be the party’s deputy leader in the August leadership spill.

Ms Banks’s resignation and move to the cross benches followed Mr Morrison’s appointment.

Ms Banks was applauded within the Liberal party when she won the seat of Chisholm from Labor in 2016.

She was the only Liberal-National Coalition candidate to win a seat held by an opposition party.

First published in the Western Port News – 30 January 2019


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