Labor leader Chris Minns has been sworn in as the 47th Premier of New South Wales alongside Prue Car, the second woman to become Deputy Premier of the state.
While Liberal gains in key seats have dampened Labor’s hopes for a majority government, the interim Minns ministry of eight MPs took the reins of government at a small ceremony at Sydney’s Government House.
The 43-year-old premier said: “We don’t know the final composition of the next parliament but my team and I are ready to hit the ground running. We know there’s a huge responsibility on our shoulders and work starts today.”
Ms. Car takes the Education and Early Learning portfolio. Daniel Mookhey will be Treasurer. Former opposition leader Michael Daley becomes Attorney-General. Jo Haylen has the Transport portfolio while Penny Sharpe is Environment and Heritage minister. Ryan Park will look after Health while John Graham has responsibility for Roads, Arts, and is Special Minister of State.
The full ministry is expected to be sworn in next week once the final make-up is clear.
Labor needs 47 seats to have a lower house majority, but that is looking out of reach.
Liberal candidates have leap-frogged Labor’s early leads in Goulburn, Terrigal, Winston Hills, Holsworthy and Miranda.
Labor’s candidate for Balmain Philippa Scott has conceded to new Greens MP Kobi Shetty.
Labor’s lead in Kiama is also slipping away with the seat likely to fall to independent and former Liberal Gareth Ward.
He was dumped from the party and suspended from parliament after being charged with historical sexual and indecent assault offences.
He pleaded not guilty in Nowra District Court to five charges on Tuesday.
The new premier spent two hours being briefed by his predecessor Dominic Perrottet over the transition process before making a midnight visit to Sydney’s Westmead Hospital, where he met with nurses and paramedics working the overnight shift.
A trio of independents – Alex Greenwich, Greg Piper and Joe McGirr – promised the new government confidence and supply if Labor cannot form a majority.
Former Planning minister Anthony Roberts, former Attorney-General Mark Speakman, and former Trade minister Alister Henskens are the leading contenders for the Liberal leadership.
The Australian Christian Lobby says the election of a Labor government in New South Wales need not be bad news for Christians.
Deputy Director Dan Flynn told Vision Radio Chris Minns has pledged to exempt prayer from a proposed law to ban what’s often referred to as ‘conversion therapy.’
“They specifically will not ban prayer. And I think they’re saying where people seek counselling by consent for same sex attraction or something like that, that may not be banned. So Minns has made some strong statements that ought to be encouraged,” he said.
With Australian Associated Press