Roger Cook is the new Premier of Western Australia following the resignation of Mark McGowan on Monday.
McGowan is expected to leave Parliament by the end of this week, which will trigger a by-election in his seat of Rockingham.
Who is Roger Cook?
Cook, who is from the Labor Party, has been WA’s Deputy Premier since 2017.
He has also served as Health Minister, and was a pivotal figure in the state’s management of the COVID-19 pandemic. This included closing off the state from the rest of Australia for almost two years to limit the spread of the virus.
Cook has held a variety of other portfolios, including Trade and Tourism. He also served as the Opposition Deputy Leader from 2008 to 2017.
Taking the top job
Following McGowan’s resignation, Cook won the leadership race after his key rival, Amber-Jade Sanderson, dropped out.
Sanderson is serving as Health Minister and has previously led the environment, climate and commerce portfolios.
Roger Cook’s Government
Cook will inherit a government that is largely popular.
His government has 53 of the 59 Lower House seats in Parliament and also has a majority in the Upper House.
Transport Minister Rita Saffioti is expected to be named as Cook’s deputy. She also challenged for the leadership, but withdrew earlier in the week.
The path forward
A reshuffle of the WA Cabinet is now expected to follow.
Many senior portfolios are now likely to be passed on to new members. This will include a new Treasurer who will be replacing McGowan.