Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

NOW THE PARTY'S OVER PETE Slipper Defiant despite Attacks

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

NOW THE PARTY'S OVER PETE Slipper Defiant despite Attacks

Article excerpt

Byline: BILL HOFFMAN and MARK FURLER

PRESSURE is mounting on embattled Federal MP Peter Slipper to quit the LNP, with Sunshine Coast party members furious over his expenses scandal and decision to accept Labor's offer to be deputy speaker. The issue is expected to come to a head today at a behind-closed-doors meeting of the Sunshine Coast zone of the LNP.

The Daily learned Mr Slipper was hammered by party supporters at a meeting of the party's Fisher Divisional Council.

"THEY were virtually demanding his head,'' one party insider, who asked not to be named, told the Daily yesterday as he described last week's proceedings at the Kawana electorate office.

However, a defiant Mr Slipper declared he believed support for him remained strong.

"There is a small group within the LNP out to destroy the party and the sooner they resign the better,'' the MP told the Daily.

Mr Slipper denied party members wanted him to go.

"There were no calls for me at the meeting to stand down and I estimate that I enjoyed the support of about 80% of those present," he said.

But members at the meeting said there were demands for answers over his huge taxi, Comm Car, and airfare expense claims and his acceptance of the deputy speaker role after colleague Alex Somlyay had turned it down.

Many of the 60-strong crowd that jammed the office left dissatisfied with the responses they received and with the MP's continued deflection of questions as being based on a Sunshine Coast Daily vendetta.

The party member said Mr Slipper failed to convince anyone with his responses to questions during the lengthy meeting.

"It was all smoke and mirrors stuff," the party member said.

Mr Slipper has claimed the expenses were incurred for government business, but party members pointed out there were no sittings on days he had made claims. …

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