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    Dutton brushes off ‘Voldemort’ jab ahead of taking Liberal reins

    Peter Dutton has brushed off a comparison to a children’s book villain as he prepares to take the reins of a reeling Liberal Party cast into opposition for the first time in almost a decade.

    Dutton, a former defence minister, pledged today to bring the moderate and conservative wings of the party together in a statement confirming his leadership tilt.

    The Queensland MP will run unopposed for the top job and is set to become opposition leader.

    Peter Dutton will be the next opposition leader. (Jamila Toderas)

    “Labor talked a big game on the economy. They now have to deliver and we will hold them to account,” he said.

    Labor MP Tanya Plibersek launched an early barb Dutton’s way yesterday, comparing him to Harry Potter uber-villain Voldemort.

    “I think there will be a lot of children who have watched a lot of Harry Potter films who will be very frightened of what they are seeing on TV at night, that’s for sure,” she told Brisbane radio station 4BC.

    “I am saying he looks a bit like Voldemort.”

    Plibersek has since contacted Dutton to apologise.

    Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, who had pledged to end the politics of conflict, has also labelled Plibersek’s jab “unacceptable”.

    Dutton acknowledged her apology when speaking to Ray Hadley on 2GB this morning, saying the comment was “unfortunate”.

    “I’m not bald by choice, I was diagnosed with a skin condition a couple of years ago, so it’s just a reality of getting older,” he said.

    “I’m not the prettiest bloke on the block but I hope that I’m going to be pretty effective.”

    New South Wales MP Sussan Ley is the favourite to be Dutton’s deputy, while Angus Taylor and Stuart Robert are jockeying to be shadow treasurer.

    Dutton would be the first leader of the Liberal Party from Queensland since it was established in 1944.

    He highlighted his political experience in the portfolios of defence, home affairs, health, finance, assistant treasurer, sport and employment.

    Sussan Ley is considered the frontrunner for deputy Liberal leader.
    Sussan Ley is considered the frontrunner for deputy Liberal leader. (Alex Ellinghausen)

    He also pledged to bring the fractured wings of the Liberal Party together.

    “We aren’t the ‘Moderate Party’. We aren’t the ‘Conservative Party’. We are Liberals. We are the Liberal Party.

    “We believe in families – whatever their composition. Small and micro businesses. For aspirational hard-working ‘forgotten people’ across the cities, suburbs, regions and in the bush,” he said.

    Liberal and Labor HQs tell two different stories

    Former home affairs minister Karen Andrews confirmed to the ABC yesterday that nobody else will take on Dutton for the role of opposition leader.

    Dutton was a policeman before entering parliament in 2001 at the age of 30.

    Since then he has represented the seat of Dickson in Brisbane’s north.

    Source by [author_name]

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