“We believe this is a team that will provide unity, stability and experience to continue Gladys Berejiklian’s work,” he told reporters.
Mr Ayres said he hoped to give a greater voice to the people of western Sydney, as well as across the state.
“This is a leadership ticket that anyone in NSW can support.”
The leadership contest narrowed earlier on Saturday with potential candidate Andrew Constance declaring his intent to switch to federal politics.
The NSW frontbencher will leave the state parliament by the end of the year and run for the federal Liberal candidate for Gilmore.
The Transport Minister says he will leave the NSW front bench next week and plans to step down as Bega MP by the end of 2021, triggering a by-election.
Gladys Berejiklian resigns as NSW Prime Minister
Constance gained national fame during the “Black Summer” 2019-20 wildfire season as he fought to defend his fire-stricken community on the south coast of NSW.
He has been the Bega MP since March 2003.
“I love our region, its people and I couldn’t be prouder to continue serving. From Black Summer to the pandemic, we are the strongest and most resilient communities you will ever see,” said Mr. Constance.
There are now four senior Liberals vying for NSW’s new prime minister following the shocking resignation of Gladys Berejiklian.
Former Prime Minister John Howard has resigned himself to Dominic Perrottet.
“I think his background, his experience as a treasurer and, most importantly, his commitment to economic reform mean that, of all, he is the best person to take the helm,” Howard told Sky New’s Sunday Agenda program.
“We must continue with things like economic reform. He is very committed to tax reform.”
Perrottet has not officially shown his hand yet, but has spoken with family and colleagues.
Planning Minister Rob Stokes is to date the only senior minister to formally throw in his hat, arguing that he possesses “the right balance of experience, vision and integrity” necessary to fulfill the role in such a crucial role. moment to take.
Another who is considering his options is Attorney General Mark Speakman.
“I am encouraged by the encouragement I have received from colleagues to nominate and I will have more to say tomorrow,” he said on Saturday.
Another potential contender is Jobs Secretary Stuart Ayres, while Environment Secretary Matt Kean and Police Secretary David Elliott are listed as possible deputies.
Tough job to replace popular leader
Whoever wins the leadership race has a difficult task to follow.
Since her resignation, Ms Berejiklian, a wildly popular prime minister, has been praised by everyone from opposition leader Chris Minns – who said he “cannot blame her dedication and hard work” – to Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who praised her “heroic” qualities.
On Saturday, voters flocked to her home and office with flowers and balloons, while others put up handmade signs.
Ms Berejiklian announced her resignation on Friday after the state corruption watchdog announced that the 51-year-old was being investigated for possible breaches of public trust.
The ICAC says it is investigating whether she was “exercising public functions” in a conflict situation, given her secret five-year relationship with ex-MP Daryl Maguire.
Crying and sometimes angry, she said Friday that she had “no other option” but to resign, but denied having made any complaints.
She will also resign from parliament as soon as a by-election can be held for her seat from Willoughby on Sydney’s Lower North Shore.
Additional reporting: Anna Henderson