Coast MP tight-lipped on political future
SENIOR Morrison Government Minister Steve Ciobo is playing down speculation he could be about to pull the pin on his 17-year career in Parliament.
Mr Ciobo yesterday would not put on the record that he will contest the next election, while a spokesman would say only that the Gold Coast MP was the preselected candidate for Moncrieff.
"Minister Ciobo is the preselected candidate for Moncrieff. He looks forward to helping the Morrison Government defeat Bill Shorten and Labor's high-taxing and open border agenda at the next election," he said.
The Defence Industries Minister will be at the Avalon Airshow in Melbourne today.
There have been questions, including within the Coalition, on whether Mr Ciobo would be among the next ministers to go from the Morrison Government.
Ministers Kelly O'Dwyer, Nigel Scullion and Michael Keenan announced last month they would not contest the May poll.
In January, all Queensland-based ministers in the Morrison Government, except Mr Ciobo, confirmed to The Courier-Mail that they would contest the next election.
At the time a spokesman for Mr Ciobo said he was the preselected candidate for his seat of Moncrieff and that he would seek comment from the Minister, who at the time was returning from an overseas trip.
As well as the ministers, former foreign affairs minister Julia Bishop announced last week that she would not contest the next election.
Mr Ciobo was one of the most senior ministers involved in the coup against Malcolm Turnbull, offering his resignation after the first failed spill.
After the leadership change Mr Ciobo was moved out of the Trade and Tourism portfolio and into Defence Industries in the Cabinet resheffule.
He was first elected into the seat of Moncrieff in 2001 and holds it with a 14.9 per cent margin.
It is the second safest seat for the LNP in Queensland, next to Maranoa which is held by more than 17 per cent.