Katter puts Ley on his election hit-list

Bob Katter is preparing his party to take on Sussan Ley in Farrer at next year’s federal election.
Bob Katter is preparing his party to take on Sussan Ley in Farrer at next year’s federal election.

MAVERICK federal MP Bob Katter will have a serious crack at unseating the Liberals’ Sussan Ley at next year’s federal poll.

Katter’s Australian Party is likely to preselect a candidate in the next few months.

Mr Katter — an independent from Queensland, though once a National — wants to run candidates in 80 of the 150 federal seats.

While serious about Farrer, he has previously conceded a lower house seat might not be achieved but strongly fancies the party’s chances of a Senate seat.

Mr Katter is banking on a strong show in Farrer based on the March 24 Queensland election, where his party won two of the 89 seats.

It managed to also grab more votes from Labor than from the Liberal National Party.

Referring to the Murray-Darling basin plan, Mr Katter told The Border Mail that Katter’s Australian Party was “about building and not selling out”.

But Mr Katter admitted he knew nothing about the person he hoped to unseat.

“I don’t know who he or she is, I couldn’t care less,” he said.

Ms Ley was not concerned yesterday about Mr Katter’s Farrer push.

“We’ve always had a strong field of candidates, there were 13 I think at the first election and there’s been at least six in every other election I’ve contested,” she said.

“I don’t own this seat, I reapply for my job every three years, and anyone who feels they can represent the people of Farrer should put up their hand.”

Ms Ley said she did not want to make any particular comment about whether a Katter candidate could or could not do her job.

“I would always look at every candidate on their merits, but also on their party policies,” she said.

“If you look at the policies of the Katter party at the moment they are very Queensland-focused.

“Katter’s Australian Party is talking about a plan for Queensland, not for southern NSW.”

Mr Katter said there was now another choice in Farrer — “and it’s a very serious third option” — but he admits his party is poorly resourced for a fight in Farrer.

“We will find that very difficult, we’ve got to get people to come forward to help us.”

Mr Katter intends to visit the eastern stretch of the Farrer electorate, including Albury, in February.