Dominic Perrottet has made a name for himself as a Tory poster and economic reformer, but he will now be written in the history books as the 46th person to become Premier of New South Wales – and the youngest of its history.
Mr Perrottet – from the right-wing faction of the party – defeated moderate Rob Stokes in a landslide victory in the village hall, garnering 39 votes to five on Tuesday to replace Gladys Berejiklian as leader and premier of the Liberal Party of State.
In a deal reached after days of behind-the-scenes faction wrangling, Penrith MP Stuart Ayres has been named deputy leader and moderate faction broker Matt Kean is set to be promoted to treasurer.
Ms Berejiklian resigned on Friday after the state’s corruption watchdog revealed that she was under investigation for potential breaches of public trust given her secret five-year relationship with former MP Daryl Maguire.
Only 39 years ago, Mr Perrottet is the youngest person to become Premier of New South Wales. Kristina Keneally, Nathan Rees and Nick Greiner were all 40 when they took over as head of state.
Long touted as Ms. Berejiklian’s “heir apparent”, the vote completes the devout Catholic’s meteoric rise to the top – completed only a decade after he became a member of Parliament.
One of 13 children – one of whom died at birth – born to a World Bank economist, Mr Perrottet grew up in West Pennant Hills and attended Redfield College Catholic School in Dural.
He then studied business and law at the University of Sydney, where he began to make a name for himself in student politics.
In 2005, at the age of 22, he was appointed chairman of the Young Liberals of New South Wales, following in the footsteps of a prominent class of politicians which includes Ms Berejiklian, former Prime Minister John Howard and state party chairman Philip Ruddock.
Then came a stint on the New South Wales Liberal Party executive between 2008 and 2011, when a 28-year-old Perrottet first set foot in the Legislature as as Member of Parliament for Castle Hill.
Since then, Mr Perrottet has bounced around three electorates in as many terms – Castle Hill, Hawkesbury and Epping – and served as finance and industrial relations minister before becoming treasurer and deputy party leader in 2017.
Meanwhile, the father of six managed to keep his nose almost clean.
As treasurer, he advocated for national reform of the GST and pushed for the phasing out of stamp duties – which brought the government $ 9.3 billion in the last fiscal year – in favor of an annual property tax.
But he clashed with Prime Minister Scott Morrison over federal financial support for businesses closed during the current COVID-19 lockdown.
And as the minister responsible for the state’s workers’ compensation insurer, Icare, Perrottet has come under fire after the agency underpaid thousands of injured workers by as much as $ 80 million. dollars.
A member of the NSW Government’s COVID-19 crisis cabinet, he was back in the headlines in July after reports revealed he opposed the extension of the Greater Sydney lockdown, arguing that the dire economic impacts meant it was time to learn to live with the virus.
The epidemic has since killed more than 350 people.
His personal views on social issues have also aroused the ire of some quarters.
He and his rival Rob Stokes have both voted against decriminalizing abortion, which has ramifications for legislation on voluntary assistance in dying, which is due to go to parliament this year.
He opposed the legalization of same-sex marriage, previously warned that “throwing money” on welfare was helping to increase divorce rates, called some climate change policies ” gratuitous waste ”and called Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States in 2016“ a victory for people the elites take for granted ”.