Australia

Nats confirm leadership team in Canberra

Nationals leader Michael McCormack says there's no need to raise Newstart because there are many jobs. Source: AAP

National Party MPs are expected to keep Michael McCormack as their leader and Bridget McKenzie as deputy at a meeting in the wake of the coalition election win.

The Nationals are set to firm up their leadership after the coalition's convincing election victory.

Michael McCormack, who is also deputy prime minister, is expected to be re-elected leader and Bridget McKenzie his deputy when Nationals MPs and Senators meet in Canberra on Thursday.

The Nationals have maintained 16 seats in the House of Representatives, including LNP MPs in Queensland who sit in their party room in Canberra.

But they will have a reduced presence in the Senate for this term of federal parliament, with Tasmania's Steve Martin appearing unlikely to hold his seat in the upper house.

As the Liberals also have picked up extra seats in the lower house, they will hold a greater proportion of seats than the Nationals in the coming parliament.

The ratio typically affects how many cabinet ministry roles the Nationals get to hold, which currently sits at five.

But it's possible the prime minister could keep the five ministerial positions to try to avoid leadership tensions in the Nationals, as former leader Barnaby Joyce remains in Mr McCormack's orbit.

Asked whether Mr McCormack will remain leader, Nationals frontbencher Matt Canavan said he could see no reason why he wouldn't.

"The Nationals party pretty rarely changes leaders ... we're a pretty stable force," he told Sky News on Wednesday.

The party's coalition agreement with the Liberals is among other issues that will be canvassed at the Nationals' meeting.

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