Tue. Jul 5th, 2022

Dave Sharma has conceded defeat, congratulating independent Allegra Spender on winning the highly-contested seat of Wentworth.
Mr Sharma issued a statement on Monday morning, saying while there are still some 40,000 votes still to be counted, he expected Ms Spender’s current lead would not change markedly.
“It has been a privilege to serve the people of Wentworth these past three years as their federal Member of Parliament, and I wish to thank the people of Wentworth for the opportunity to do so,” he said.

Mr Sharma said at a national level, he was glad to have played a part in Australia adopting a net-zero emissions target by 2050, facilitating the AUKUS arrangement, supporting the ratification of free trade agreements, and helping shape policy responses to China.

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“I put myself forward for elected office, after a career of public service, because I believe passionately in Australia and all that we stand for, and because I am committed to making us a better nation in every respect. That commitment and that belief remains undiminished. “

“Australia today faces a more challenging global outlook than we have seen for several generations, and in the face of such challenges the quality of our political and national leadership will matter greatly. Myopia and complacency in our national political discourse are luxuries we can no longer afford. “

Pauline Hanson fighting to hold onto Senate seat

As counting continues, One Nation founder Pauline Hanson could cling onto her seat in the Senate.
After a major swing to the Greens in Queensland, early counting appeared to indicate Ms Hanson would lose her seat, with the party polling just 7.8 per cent of the state’s Senate vote.

But while she fell short of winning the seat in her own right, as the count currently stands it appears she will benefit from other minor party preferences.

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Ms Hanson spent election day isolating after testing positive for COVID-19. She has not been vaccinated.

Liberals weigh up options for party leader

Earlier on Monday morning, Tasmanian Liberal Bridget Archer said she would consider putting her hand up as deputy leader to keep the party from moving further to the right, amid speculation Peter Dutton will become leader.

Ms Archer, first elected in 2019 and expected to retain her ultra marginal seat of Bass, told ABC’s RN Breakfast she backed “traditional values”.

Close up of Bridget Archer speaking to reporters

Liberal member for Bass Bridget Archer at a press conference during the 2022 federal election campaign, in Mowbray Tasmania. Source: AAP / MICK TSIKAS / AAPIMAGE

When asked if she would consider a tilt at the deputy spot, she said “potentially”.

“I’ve seen some early commentary around some idea that the party should move further to the right and I will certainly resist all efforts for that to occur,” she said.

“We need to bring the party back to the center.”

Mr Dutton is widely expected to become the opposition leader although other names have been floated, including ex-home affairs minister and Queenslander Karen Andrews and former trade minister and Victorian Dan Tehan.
Former environment minister Sussan Ley has been floated as a potential deputy leader.

With AAP

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