Peter Dutton vows to unite Liberals when he becomes new leader

peter duton has dismissed a comparison to a children’s book villain as he prepares to take the reins of a faltering Liberal Party thrown into opposition for the first time in nearly a decade.

Dutton, a former defense minister, today pledged to unite the moderate and conservative wings of the party in a statement confirming his penchant for leadership.

The Queensland MP will run unopposed for the top seat and become Leader of the Opposition.

Peter Dutton will be the next Leader of the Opposition. (Jamila Toderas)

“Labor talked a lot about the economy. Now they have to comply and we will hold them accountable,” he said.

Labor MP Tanya Plibersek threw an early spike in Dutton’s way yesterday, comparing him to Harry Potter supervillain Voldemort.

“I think there will be a lot of kids who have seen a lot of Harry Potter movies who will be very scared by what they see on TV at night, that’s for sure,” he told Brisbane radio station 4BC.

“I’m saying he looks a bit like Voldemort.”

Plibersek has since contacted Dutton to apologize.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, who had pledged to end the conflict policy, also called Plibersek’s coup “unacceptable.”

Dutton acknowledged his apology when speaking to Ray Hadley at 2GB this morning, calling the comment “unfortunate.”

“I’m not bald by choice, I was diagnosed with a skin condition a couple of years ago, so it’s just a reality of getting older,” he said.

“I’m not the cutest guy on the block, but I hope to be pretty effective.”

NSW MP Sussan Ley is favored to be Dutton’s deputy, while Angus Taylor and Stuart Robert are vying to be shadow treasurer.

Dutton would be the first leader of the Queensland Liberal Party since it was established in 1944.

He highlighted his political experience in the defense, interior, health, finance, deputy treasurer, sports and employment portfolios.

Sussan Ley is considered the leading deputy Liberal leader candidate.
Sussan Ley is considered the leading deputy Liberal leader candidate. (Alex Ellinghausen)

He also promised to unite the fractured wings of the Liberal Party.

“We are not the ‘Moderate Party’. We are not the ‘Conservative Party’. We are Liberals. We are the Liberal Party.

“We believe in families, whatever their composition. Small and micro businesses. For aspiring and hard-working ‘forgotten people’ in the cities, the suburbs, the regions and in the bush,” he said.

Liberal and Labor HQs tell two different stories

Former Home Secretary Karen Andrews confirmed to ABC yesterday that no one else will take on Dutton for the role of Leader of the Opposition.

Dutton was a police officer before entering parliament in 2001 at the age of 30.

Since then he has represented Dickson’s headquarters in North Brisbane.

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