John Bjelke-Petersen.
John Bjelke-Petersen. Danielle Lowe

Palmer says Bjelke-Petersen would make good PUP candidate

PRIME MINISTER hopeful Clive Palmer will talk to the son of former Queensland Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen about what he can contribute to his new Palmer United Party.

John Bjelke-Petersen announced - through Clive Palmer's public relations team - on Wednesday he resigned from the LNP because it had turned its back on regional Queensland.

He followed in the footsteps of Mr Palmer, who left the LNP to start his own political force, the Palmer United Party, this year.

Mr Bjelke-Petersen jumped to Mr Palmer's defence last year when the LNP suspended Mr Palmer following a very public stoush with Queensland's leading politicians.

Asked whether he would like Mr Bjelke-Petersen to be the PUP's next candidate for the Federal Election, Mr Palmer said he would make a good candidate.

"I note with interest the fact that he resigned from the LNP and that is the important thing," he said.

"It's a growing trend for people in this state to resign from the Liberal National Party.

"It should be the Liberal National Party but if you go to regional Queensland it has been devastated. Hospitals have been closed, beds have been lost and people under attack."

Mr Palmer will travel to Mr Bjelke-Petersen's hometown of Kingaroy on Friday to announce the PUP's federal candidate for the seat of Maranoa.

Mr Bjelke-Petersen made two unsuccessful runs at politics in 2006 and 2009 when he contested his late father's state seat of Barambah.

Mr Palmer would not be drawn on whether Mr Bjelke-Petersen would have better luck with his party but confirmed he would talk to him.

"I would be happy to talk to him to see what his ideas are and if he can make a contribution - I am sure he can," he said.

In his days as a staunch LNP supporter, Mr Palmer at one stage worked as Joh Bjelke-Petersen's press advisor.


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