NSW Nats leader won't rule out federal run

NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro has refused to rule out a run at federal politics.
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro has refused to rule out a run at federal politics.

NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro has refused to rule out a switch to federal politics.

There is speculation the state Nationals leader - who holds the regional seat of Monaro - could make a tilt for the federal seat of Eden-Monaro.

The seat is currently held by Labor's Mike Kelly, who won the seat at the 2016 election.

Both electorates cover areas in the far south-east of NSW bordering Victoria and the ACT, including Queanbeyan, Cooma, Jindabyne, Perisher and Thredbo.

When asked on Wednesday if he would run for the seat, Mr Barilaro paid tribute to Mr Kelly but said he wouldn't rule "anything in or out".

"Mike Kelly and I, unfortunately for those in the political world who would love us to sort of battle a bit more, but we've actually been working very well as two local members," Mr Barilaro told reporters in Sydney.

"When it's election time we play the political game but outside of election time we get on with delivering.

"There is no indication that he's leaving. He just got elected, I just got elected."

The deputy premier said he was proud of the role he's playing in NSW and "we'll see what happens".

"I'm not going to rule anything in or out but right now Mike Kelly's the member, it's all speculation, it's been ongoing for months and I'll continue to work with Mike in our seat," Mr Barilaro said.

Australian Associated Press