Liberals want a woman to replace O'Dwyer

Liberals want a woman to replace O'Dwyer

Liberals want a woman to replace O'Dwyer

"I am so thankful to have Edward and Olivia and I don't want to be greedy".

Minister for Women Kelly O'Dwyer has announced she will be quitting federal politics at the upcoming federal election.

"I no longer want to consistently miss out on seeing my children when I wake up in the morning and when I go to bed at night", O'Dwyer, flanked by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, told reporters.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten said that "it's not her going which is the issue" but that it was unclear how the Liberal Party would promote another woman in their frontbench.

"There is another very personal reason".

"We need to be very realistic".

She said she wants to have a third child and that "everything would have to go right" in order for it to happen.

However, she says quotas are not the answer to help boost the numbers of women in the party.

At age 41, O'Dwyer said that her and her husband's parenting journey has been far from straightforward.

"I support all women's choices", he said.

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O'Dwyer was "great woman who's done a great job for her country and community" and had made a great choice for her family, he said. "I want women to have more choices and all the independence that comes with that".

"The parliament's loss is you, your family's (and your sanity's!) gain".

Another name in the mix is the seat's previous occupant, former treasurer Peter Costello, although Mr Morrison said on Monday he hadn't heard anything about the Future Fund chairman wanting to return to parliament.

While Labor Senator Kristina Keneally tweeted she may not have always agreed with Ms O'Dwyer, she'd been was a "friendly person" who welcomed her into the upper house previous year.

After the Liberal party wipe out at the Victorian by-election, O'Dwyer reportedly unleashed an extraordinary attack on her own party, telling her colleagues during a crisis meeting that Liberals are regarded as "homophobic, anti-women, climate-change deniers".

Both Ms O'Dwyer and Mr Morrison suggested a woman could be preselected for the job.

If Ms O'Dwyer's successor fails to win at the next federal poll, the Liberals could be left without any Victorian women in the lower house since fellow Victorian Sarah Henderson's seat of Corangamite has become very marginal after a redistribution.

A former lawyer, Ms O'Dwyer holds Higgins by eight per cent. In an explosive speech to Parliament announcing her decision, she said both major parties were "years behind" when it came to the representation of women.

It is true that retaining the seat would have been no certainty even with O'Dwyer still as the candidate, especially given Victoria's recent anti-conservative tendencies in state election races, but with a new candidate, the Liberal jewel is undoubtedly more vulnerable.

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