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Nationals MPs receive Cabinet promotions

Nationals MPs Darren Chester and Keith Pitt have been elevated to federal Cabinet in a ministerial reshuffle.

Feb 06, 2020, updated Feb 06, 2020
Nationals MPs Keith Pitt (centre) and Darren Chester (right) have been elevated to federal Cabinet. (Photo: Mick Tsikas/AAP PHOTOS)

Nationals MPs Keith Pitt (centre) and Darren Chester (right) have been elevated to federal Cabinet. (Photo: Mick Tsikas/AAP PHOTOS)

Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced the new line-up on Thursday alongside Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack, who survived Barnaby Joyce’s leadership challenge on Tuesday.

Chester has returned to Cabinet, with his portfolios of veterans’ affairs and defence personnel given higher status, while Pitt is the new resources, water and northern Australia minister.

New deputy Nationals leader David Littleproud has regained the agriculture portfolio, replacing Bridget McKenzie who quit over the sports rorts scandal.

Littleproud, who remains drought and emergency management minister, has relinquished responsibilities for water.

NSW MP Mark Coulton – a key ally of McCormack – will be minister for regional health, regional communications and local government.

Andrew Gee, also a McCormack backer, has been promoted to the outer ministry with responsibilities for regional education and decentralisation.

He also takes over as assistant trade minister.

Queensland MP Michelle Landry will continue as assistant minister for children and family services, while also assisting Pitt as minister for northern Australia.

NSW MP Kevin Hogan has been promoted from the backbench to be McCormack’s assistant minister.

Queensland senator Matt Canavan quit as resources and northern Australia minister to support Barnaby Joyce’s failed attempt on McCormack’s leadership.

-AAP

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