Independent MP McGowan’s successor chosen

Rural health researcher Helen Haines has been chosen by supporters of Victoria’s Cathy McGowan to succeed the independent federal MP when she retires.

Ms McGowan is scheduled to make an announcement about her future on Monday at a media conference in Wodonga.

Almost 200 volunteers picked Ms Haines as their next candidate for Indi at a meeting to determine a succession plan in Benalla.

“I want to thank the participants who turned up on a hot day, those who have put their hands up to be considered and Voices 4 Indi,” Ms McGowan said in a statement on Saturday.

“I will now consider the outcome of today’s process and make further comment on Monday morning.”

Ms McGowan has held the northeast Victorian seat of Indi since 2013, when she pulled off a stunning victory over Liberal MP Sophie Mirabella.

Nationals deputy leader Bridget McKenzie has hinted at contesting the seat, moving her office from Bendigo to Wodonga and refusing to rule out a potential switch to the lower house.

The Liberals have pre-selected Steve Martin for Indi, while Labor’s Eric Kerr will also run.

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