Controversial Liberal MP Bernie Finn has resigned as the Coalition’s whip in the upper house, just days after Opposition Leader Matthew Guy demanded he be part of the parliamentary team or leave the party and sit on the crossbench.
Finn sparked outcry last week when he posted he was “praying” for abortion to be banned in Victoria, including in the case of sexual assault, following a leaked draft opinion from the US Supreme Court indicating that the Roe v Wade decision, which legalised abortion, could be overturned.
Victorian Opposition leader Matthew Guy and MP Bernie Finn.Credit:Nine
In a statement to colleagues late on Monday afternoon, Finn said he wanted to bring them “up to speed on events of today”.
“This afternoon, I resigned as your whip,” the upper house MP said. “Thank you to all (well, most anyway) for your assistance and co-operation over the past 3½ years.”
Whip’s corral MPs for votes and ensure they turn up in the chamber when required.
Guy last week said the Liberal Party was “absolutely sick” of Finn’s social media posts and that if the upper house MP did not want to be a part of the Liberal team, he should quit.
“If Bernie wants to stay as a member of the parliamentary Liberal Party, preselections open in a couple of weeks, and Bernie needs to work out if he wants to be on the team as part of a parliamentary Liberal Party,” Guy said.
Liberal Party preselections for the upper house ahead of November’s state election are expected to open shortly after the federal election on May 21, and several people are priming to challenge Finn who is on the first spot for the Western Metropolitan ticket.
More to come.
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