Wanneroo councillor Linda Aitken has won a Monday night preselection to be the Liberal Party WA candidate in Pearce at the upcoming federal election.
Ms Aitken beat former navy officer and Fremantle state election candidate Miquela Riley, with the margin understood to be eight votes.
Ms Riley had been reported in media to have support from both the Clan- a group alleged to control the internal workings of the party; and Danielle Blain, who co-authored a recent review of the party's state election loss.
The preselection was a plebiscite, enabling a higher level of participation from local members.
The preselection was needed after the former federal attorney general Christian Porter announced he would not recontest the seat he has held for the Liberals since 2013, following a series of damaging allegations.
Ms Aitken, a nurse, was the Liberal candidate for Butler in the March state election, is a board member of East Butler and Yanchep Lagoon primary schools and a member of the Wanneroo & Districts Historical Society.
To win, she will need to hold onto a seat which has a margin of about 5.2 per cent, following a redistribution which shifted the electorate's catchment of voters westward and removed rural areas.
Ms Aitken will also need to survive a substantial swing against the coalition looming in Western Australia, according to recent Roy Morgan polling.
"The situation in Western Australia has tightened since late November with the ALP on 50.5 per cent (down 3 percentage points) cf. L-NP 49.5 per cent (up 3 percentage points) on a two-party preferred basis," the pollster said earlier this month.
"This result represents a swing of 6.1 percentage points to the ALP since the 2019 federal election."