LNP war boils over as president resigns
THE internecine war within the LNP has erupted with president David Hutchinson tonight informing members that he was resigning his position.
Mr Hutchinson, who took over the role in December 2018, has had a bitter falling out with LNP Leader Deb Frecklington over leaked polling. He will officially step down at a meeting on Monday afternoon.The party's highest ranked elected MP Peter Dutton has also previously criticised Mr Hutchinson for taking a paid job with Clive Palmer, which he later quit.
In his resignation letter, which comes three months out from the state election, Mr Hutchinson says the LNP must do "everything in our power to ensure a LNP victory on October 31".
"For some of us, that will mean stepping up into new roles and taking on new responsibilities in the coming months. For others, it might mean thinking about whether we are the best people to fill those vital campaign roles, or whether we should allow others to come through," the letter says.
"There is no member who is exempt from asking himself or herself what our party needs from us at this time, including the leadership. So I'm letting you know that this evening I have advised State Executive that I will step down as LNP President at a State Executive meeting on Monday afternoon. While I feel I have a lot more to give to the LNP, now is the right time for me to step aside and support my successor as they lead the Party organisation to a state election victory and beyond.
"I was asked to take on the role of President in late 2018, after Labor's crooked electoral laws forced my predecessor to step down from the position. At that time we were well and truly on the downhill run to a Federal Election that no-one expected us to win. And we copped a further blow to our funding during the campaign from the High Court, which ruled that we had to hand back over half a million dollars in donations to Federal campaigns.
"Despite these odds, the LNP effectively delivered victory to the Morrison Government by holding all our seats and gaining two - quite the opposite of the "red wave" that was supposedly going to sweep across Queensland. Since then we have enjoyed an emphatic victory in the Brisbane City Council election, and in the hard-fought Currumbin by-election.
"And despite the Labor Party's biased fundraising laws, the party remains in a strong financial position. We have recently moved to bigger premises that will better support campaign activities and our investments are in the best shape they have ever been despite the tumultuous economic times.
"I am also proud of the fact that together we protected the values and integrity of our party membership from people who sought to exploit us. We are stronger for it.
"So members, I step down as your President with our party in good shape. We hold Government in Canberra. The LNP is on track for 20 years in charge of Brisbane City Hall, and there are dozens of Mayors and Councillors across the state who are LNP members. While campaign funding is always a challenge, our asset base and underlying cash position are strong and continuing to grow. In short, your party is in great shape to fight and win the state election.
"State Executive will be asked to elect a new President at its meeting on Monday afternoon, as it is required to under the Constitution.
"I thank you for the privilege of serving as your President. I will continue to be a hard-working and loyal member of the LNP, alongside so many thousands of members across the state. We are the strongest and most successful political division in Australia. May that continue on October 31.
It is understood there will be several candidates for the position including former president Gary Spence who resigned after the Palaszczuk Government introduced a ban on property developers donating to political parties.
The party's southeast Queensland vice-president Cynthia Hardy is also considered a possible contender.
Originally published as LNP war boils over as president resigns