Senior Liberal MPs have expressed doubts about the electability of their party following their devastating defeat in the Victorian state election.
Labor Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews enjoyed a relatively easy victory over the Liberals in the state election, with large areas of Melbourne’s east swinging in his favour. Shadow Attorney-General John Pesutto, whose job was on the line pending the result, was quoted saying “something’s gone horribly wrong” while watching the votes count down in his Hawthorn seat.
He said that “we shouldn’t be in this position” and that the party needed a “root-and-branch review” in order to diagnose why the party was rejected so overwhelmingly by voters.
Jane Hume, a Victorian Liberal Senator, said that there was “no doubt” that the ousting of Malcolm Turnbull as prime minister had a significant impact on the result of the election.
She said that the leadership challenge against Mr Turnbull was “driven clearly by Queensland” but that there were also “some Victorians involved”. She said that it appeared those Victorian Liberals weren’t thinking ahead of the effect such a leadership change might have on a pending state election result.
She added that she did not believe the result was “a reflection on Scott Morrison” but of the “disruption that was caused by the loss of Malcolm Turnbull”.
In his concession speech, Victorian Liberal leader Matthew Guy said that “tonight is clearly not our night” and said that he personally congratulated Premier Andrews on a “stunning” result.