One of The Nationals’ most successful election campaigns in decades was overseen by Scott Mitchell, who today announced he would be stepping down as Director of the party early in the new-year.
The organisational and parliamentary wings of The Nationals praised Mr Mitchell for having overseen two important election campaigns that delivered for regional Australia.
Federal President of The Nationals, Larry Anthony, praised Mr Mitchell who he has known in various roles for approximately 15 years.
“Scott has held many positions in The Nationals over the years at both an organisational and Ministerial staffing level. But, without a doubt, he made his best mark when he took on the position as Director of the party and helped steer The Nationals to two important election wins.
“The first was the election of the Coalition government in 2013 and the second was the return of the Coalition this year where The Nationals delivered the critical seats to retain government for the Coalition in our own right.
“These have been incredibly important wins for regional Australia who depend and rely on The Nationals to be their champions in government,” Mr Anthony said.
Mr Anthony wished Mr Mitchell all the best for the future and said he left the party in a very strong position.
“As a federated party he will not only be missed by The Nationals parliamentary and organisational wings, but also by the state divisions and grassroots membership of The Nationals.
“The Nationals, like no other party, are an organisation born out of its membership. Scott not only recognised and understood that, but he valued that and championed that,” he said.
Mr Anthony also expressed gratitude on behalf of The Nationals’ Federal Management Committee and John McEwen House for Mr Mitchell’s loyalty and tireless commitment to the Party.
Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of The Nationals, Barnaby Joyce said Mr Mitchell advised the party-room of his decision today. The Deputy Prime Minister congratulated Mr Mitchell for the significant role he had played in a campaign that saw The Nationals increase their numbers in the parliament.
“The Coalition was able to secure majority government by one-seat and The Nationals increased their numbers by one seat. Scott Mitchell’s commitment to the party, his heavy-lifting on tough issues, his passion for The Nationals as being local champions; and his strategic advice during a tough and gruelling campaign were key to the Coalition’s election victory”, Mr Joyce said.
“Scott and I have worked together very well. Like me, he understands that regional and middle- ground Australia are not interested in esoteric debates on issues that excite a niche philosophising set. Right from the get-go he has been a champion of job security, strong regional economies, border security and building infrastructure to grow our jobs and exports.
“That’s’ why he was Director of two very successful campaigns for The Nationals,” Mr Joyce said.
Federal Treasurer of The Nationals, John Sharp, also congratulated Mr Mitchell on his tenure as Director of the Party.
“Scott will leave this role knowing that he contributed to two nationally significant and important achievements with Coalition election wins in 2013 and 2016,” he said.
Mr Sharp said The Nationals had formed a committee for the purpose of identifying a replacement for Mr Mitchell, and hoped to have that finalised by the end of the year to allow for a proper transition.
“His will be very hard footsteps to follow. The bar has been set at a very high level,” Mr Sharp said.
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