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Senator Dean Smith triumphs as he moves up on the Liberal ticket

Senator Dean Smith has been moved up the Liberal party’s senate ticket for the next federal election, he’ll now hold the number two spot on the ticket behind Senator Michaela Cash.

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The new arrangements were triggered by the retirement of Senator Mathias Cormann. It has been reported that the powerful Christian lobby within the WA Liberal party had been pushing for new candidates to be given the second and third spots on the ticket, pushing Smith down to the fourth spot on the ticket which is considered unwinnable.

Smith’s leadership role in bringing forth marriage equality legislation had been suggested as the motivation for the moves against him within the party. Joondalup Mayor Albert Jacobs was rumoured as a possible contender, as party organiser Dr Sherry Sufi.

The outcomes of Saturday’s party meeting saw Senator Smith retain his backing of party members and he was moved up to the second spot on the ticket. The third spot will be filled by Bunbury Businessman Ben Small, while Dr Sufi will be the party’s candidate in the fourth spot.

Dr Sufi made headlines in 2016 as the federal Liberal candidate for Fremantle, speaking out against constitutional recognition for First Nations people, and describing marriage equality as a “a perfidious and futile attack on language.”

Then Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull told reporters that he disagreed with the local candidate on both issues.

“I don’t agree with that but this is an issue on which there is a wide range views but my own view is we should recognize our first Australians in our constitution that is, I might say, the view and commitment of the Government,” the Prime Minister said.

After stepping down as the Fremantle candidate, Sufi claimed his campaign was brought down by “cowards” who highlighted his past comments on marriage equality and Indigenous recognition.

OIP Staff


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