Kevin Donnelly (sometime education expert, former chief-of-staff to Kevin Andrews and former Kooyong Liberal federal electorate vice chair) had a spectacular go at Petro Georgiou in yesterday’s Herald Sun. The paper hasn’t seen fit to share it with its online readers, but the political criticisms were predictable:

After ten years as the member for Kooyong, Petro Georgiou appears to have finally achieved his 15 minutes of fame… Simply because Prime Minister Howard has modified Australia’s detention policy cannot disguise the fact that Mr Georgiou has passed his use-by date. While the Liberal Party might be a broad church, the fact is that the member for Kooyong’s views on issues like mandatory detention and asylum-seekers are so out of the ball park that he would be better suited joining the Democrats or the Greens… The member for Kooyong has a long history of championing Left-wing views on a range of social issues…

Donnelly had some more valid points to make about the way Georgiou has tended his backyard:

Under prime minister Robert Menzies and the Liberal leader Andrew Peacock, the seat of Kooyong was the jewel in the crown of the Victoria Liberal division. After ten years with Mr Georgiou as its member, membership is static and fund-raising is poor.

But the Kooyong Doc chose not to share some of the more interesting background with Hun readers. Donnelly is the serial pest of Victorian Liberal Party pre-selections, and most of his bids for a seat have taken place within the boundaries of Kooyong. They haven’t succeeded. One of the reasons he is the past vice chair of the electorate committee is that he hasn’t got the support of the local branches – or local state Liberal MPs Richard Dalla Riva and David Davis.

That pair are gearing up for their own preselections and currying favour with the party faithful. Was Donnelly working the rank and file, too, for when a candidate for Kooyong is chosen – not on his own behalf, but for that regular on the Hun‘s opinion pages, Andrew Bolt?