The former leader of the Hunter's peak union body has vowed to run as an independent in the seat of Hunter at the next federal election if Labor branch members are denied a vote on who should replace Joel Fitzgibbon.
Daniel Wallace, who stepped down as Hunter Workers secretary a year ago, accused Labor leader Anthony Albanese of "hypocrisy" after he asked the party's national executive to preselect Cessnock Olympic shooter Daniel Repacholi without a rank-and-file vote.
The national executive is expected to rubber-stamp Mr Repacholi's candidacy on Friday, despite negative publicity over his social media activity.
Mr Wallace, a member of Labor's Toronto branch, said on Wednesday that he expected to be booted out of the party for running as an independent.
He said Labor had "plenty of good-quality candidates" in the electorate and did not need to resort to someone who had been a party member for only a matter of weeks.
"It's not the party I signed up for," he said.
Teralba barrister and party member Stephen Ryan said he had sent a preselection nomination to the national executive even though the outcome appeared to be a foregone conclusion.
"I'm nominating after a number of the members of the rank-and-file got in touch urging me to nominate," the former Newcastle Herald journalist said.
"And I want to send a message that there are capable and talented people up here who can take the fight up to the Nationals and One Nation at the next election."
Mr Repacholi has come under fire after The Australian published tasteless remarks he made on Facebook 10 years ago and The Guardian reported on Wednesday that he had followed Instagram accounts featuring naked women posing with assault rifles.
A party insider said the controversy was the result of "blue-on-blue" infighting and would not affect the 39-year-old's selection.
Some Hunter branch members have written to the Labor hierarchy demanding a rank-and-file vote, and other prospective candidates have publicly expressed their disappointment at being denied an opportunity to seek preselection.
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