Peter Gutwein has lost control of his party with news of Sue Hickey’s “sacking” now forcing him to govern in minority.
Labor Leader Rebecca White said this extraordinary development is yet another example of a Liberal Government in turmoil.
“The internal fighting in the Liberal Party has reached boiling point with today’s news of Peter Gutwein finally losing control and effectively sacking Sue Hickey,” Ms White said.
“This will have huge implications for the party with Peter Gutwein now effectively governing in minority by having to rely on the support of an independent.
“In the past few weeks, we have seen the deep ideological divide in the Liberal Party exposed for all to see.
“We have seen an extraordinary war waged by press release to stymy debate on Voluntary Assisted Dying laws and this ideological split is not limited to Voluntary Assisted Dying – that is just the issue that brought it to the surface.
“These are the same fault lines that emerged last January when Peter Gutwein and Jeremy Rockliff edged out rival leadership team Michael Ferguson and Elise Archer by a single vote.
“These divisions feed the Liberal Government’s policy paralysis and ultimately they are holding Tasmania back.
“What has happened to Sue Hickey is part of a much bigger problem within the Liberal Party and today she called the party out on its treatment of women, saying:
“This is a challenging time for the Liberal Party and its supporters. It appears that the men in dark suits are firmly in control and there is no place for small ‘l’ Liberal women who refuse to kowtow or be subservient to the dominant males.”
“We only need to look at the recent alarming issues that have surfaced federally to see there are huge problems within the Liberal Party around equality, ethics and values.
“The Gutwein Government is too busy fighting amongst themselves to focus on rebuilding Tasmania and looking after our people.
“They have run out of ideas of their own and that was obvious with the announcements made by the Premier last week that drew largely on policy announced by Labor last year in our fully costed jobs plan.
“The Liberal Government is worn out and distracted by infighting. In contrast, Labor has a strong, capable and united team which is working hard to make Tasmania a better and fairer place.”
Rebecca White MP