Liberal candidate John Pesutto responds to claims he's being misleading with 'Teal Party' claim
Pesutto is aiming to win back his seat of Hawthorn.
Liberal candidate & former MP John Pesutto has spoken to 6 News about why he's chosen to run for the seat of Hawthorn again, after losing it to Labor at the 2018 election.
The ALP's John Kennedy narrowly won the seat in an upset 4 years ago, but now faces a challenge from both Pesutto & teal independent Melissa Lowe.
"There were a bunch of issues, as there always are, on the state campaign in 2018," Pesutto said.
He says he has "no doubt in my mind" that the 2018 federal Liberal leadership spill - which saw Malcolm Turnbull out as Prime Minister and Scott Morrison in - contributed heavily to his loss.
The Liberals have used the term 'Teal Party' when referring to Lowe, Kate Lardner (Mornington), Nomi Kaltmann (Caulfield) and Sophie Torney (Kew).
"I get the argument that they're not a registered political party, and that's a fact," Pesutto told 6 News.
"But I think most people know...it is a centrally coordinated movement."
"Is that wrong? No, of course not...(but) I don't accept that they are separate campaigns."
Pesutto was also asked about a Liberal Party media release that claimed Melissa Lowe self-selected herself, which cited old tweets from a campaign account called 'Mel4Hawthorn' - tweets that were actually published when the account was under the name 'Hawthorn Independents.'
"That wasn't my press release," he said, but added that "no one quite knows what processes are adopted in terms of the selection of a teal candidate."
Hawthorn candidates (2022)
ALP John Kennedy* (Labor)
LIB John Pesutto (Liberal)
GRN Nick Savage (Greens)
AJP Faith Fuhrer (Animal Justice)
IND Melissa Lowe (Independent)
LDP Richard Peppard (Liberal Democrats)
Watch the full interview here.
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