Calls for McVeigh replacement to be local
THE Liberal National Party should pick a candidate for the Groom by-election who is from the electorate, Mayor Paul Antonio says.
The comments come after The Courier-Mail reported LNP members were urging the party's deputy president Cameron O'Neil to seek preselection for the seat.
Mr O'Neil lives in Roma and is a councillor on the Maranoa Regional Council.
Should John McVeigh’s replacement be a local Toowoomba candidate?
This poll ended on 28 September 2020.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
Groom is one of the safest Coalition seats in the country, with former MP John McVeigh, who resigned on Friday, winning 70.48 per cent of the two-party preferred vote at the 2019 election.
"There are plenty of people in Toowoomba who could represent this seat well," Cr Antonio, who was a member of the LNP until he left in 2017, said.
"There are young people, plenty of men and women, who, if given the chance, could be outstanding candidates.
"I'd be very disappointed if people were talking about someone from outside the area, as there would be people right across the Toowoomba region who would have the passion and ability to represent this community."
The LNP's choice of candidate could also cause tensions in Canberra over what party room the candidate, if elected, would choose to sit in.
LNP MPs get to choose whether they sit in the Liberal or National party rooms.
Since 1988, all Groom MPs have either been a Liberal MP or chosen to sat in the Liberal party room.
Former MP Ian Macfarlane quit politics in 2016 after his bid to defect to The Nationals party room was denied.
Cr O'Neil and the LNP were contacted for comment.