The resignation of Liberal MP Bronwyn Bishop as parliamentary speaker yesterday, after three weeks of scrutiny over her use of travel entitlements, attention has now turned to who could will take her job running house of representatives.
Among those being named are former chief government whip Philip Ruddock, deputy Speaker Bruce Scott – who last night announced he will retire at the next election – Victorian MPs Russell Broadbent and Sharman Stone and Queensland MP Jane Prentice.
Coalition MPs have said Ruddock, 72, is the most likely replacement for Bishop, as the “Father of the House” considered to have the most experience for the position.
Next in line for the job appears to be Scott, a 25-year stalwart who was veterans affairs minister during the Howard era, but like Ruddock, he’s yet to signal an interest in the job.
However, the ABC reports that some Liberals have said they would not give the role to a Nationals MP, unless a deal was cut involving the Nationals giving up a ministerial role, therefore likely ruling Scott out of contention.
Broadbent has been cited because of his good relationship with Labor and he is also a member of the speaker’s panel and can act in the role of deputy speaker while a decision is made.
Stone was suggested as a potential candidate, but her public clashes with the prime minister over his leadership have made it unlikely.
Along with suggesting Stone, Labor MP Alannah MacTiernan put forward Jane Prentice for the role.
— Alannah MacTiernan (@AlannahMac) August 2, 2015
A decision on the replacement will be made when Parliament resumes next Monday, after a vote is put through the Lower House.
Now read: Bronwyn Bishop has resigned as Speaker.
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