Federal Member for Cowper, Luke Hartsuyker.
Federal Member for Cowper, Luke Hartsuyker. Rachel Vercoe

Hartsuyker bypasses questions on leadership vacancy

THE best response Cowper MP Luke Hartsuyker could give regarding the deputy prime minister stepping down this afternoon was to say that he won't "be making any further statements at this time".

The Coffs Coast Advocate asked Mr Hartsuyker a few simple questions thinking the long serving Nationals member may want to inform his constituents on the Coffs Coast his thoughts on today's announcement by Barnaby Joyce and what it may mean for Coffs Harbour.

The responses Mr Hartsuyker gave were so evasive they would've done a footballer with a sidestep like Warriors halfback Shaun Johnson proud.

In response to what he thinks today's revelations will mean the Nationals, Mr Hartsuyker simply stated the obvious in an emailed statement: "The Nationals Party room will meet on Monday morning to elect a new leader."

Despite saying only last week that Mr Joyce "is a strong supporter of the Coffs Harbour bypass", there was no response from Mr Hartsuyker's office to the questions about what the Cowper MP thinks the deputy prime minister stepping down means for his electorate or what the swearing in of a new infrastructure minister could mean for progress on the Coffs Harbour bypass.

The most adventurous answer from Mr Hartsuyker gave in his brief statement was in regards to his reaction to Mr Joyce announcing he will be stepping down from the leadership of the party.

"Barnaby Joyce has been a strong advocate for regional and rural Australia, and a strong supporter of the Coffs Harbour Bypass."



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