Federal Member for Calare Andrew Gee has hit back at Shooters, Fishers and Farmers' upper house member Robert Borsak, who called the Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister "lazy and useless".
Mr Borsak made the comments at the launch of the SFF's candidate Sam Romano on Monday, saying Mr Gee spent too much time outside Calare and in Canberra and was in danger of losing the election to a minor party.
However, Mr Gee said he had the "runs on the board" in performing for his electorate and rejected Mr Borsak's "nasty" claims.
However, Mr Borsak said Mr Gee was "worried" heading into the election.
"He can see this little gem he's been sitting on for too long, doing nothing for the people of Orange, doing nothing for the people of Calare, slipping out of his fingers," Mr Borsak said.
I think to breeze into town and make those throwaway and nasty lines says more about him than it does about my performance as a local member.Member for Calare Andrew Gee
"We're in with a chance and we're going to give it a red-hot go, we've got some disadvantages in time and money but we saw a nine per cent primary swing against Gee at the last election in 2016.
"I'd be surprised if we don't see another 15 or 20 per cent swing against him because he's lazy and useless."
When asked to clarify his remarks, Mr Borsak, who is halfway through an eight-year term in the NSW legislative council, reiterated he believed Mr Gee didn't spend enough time in Orange and didn't deliver for the community, but Mr Gee knocked back the claims as "nasty".
"I think if Mr Borsak spent some time out here he would know the work that we've done out here and that's quite an easy and nasty comment to make but couldn't be further from the truth," he said.
"I think to breeze into town and make those throwaway and nasty lines says more about him than it does about my performance as a local member."
Mr Gee had a list of "runs on the board" he was proud of from the past three years, including increased funding for sporting centres in Mudgee, Bathurst and Blayney as well as the new medical school slated for Orange.
"I'll be happy to run and stand on my record and I think I've worked closely with all our local communities over many years and I'll be happy to place that record before the electors on May 18," he said.
Mr Gee said having the SFF run a candidate in Calare was a "great opportunity" to open a conversation about the future of the area and the future of the country.
He wasn't taking negatives out of swings against the Nationals in the NSW state election.
Andrew Gee is worried, he can see this little gem he's been sitting on for too long, doing nothing for the people of Orange, doing nothing for the people of Calare, slipping out of his fingers.Shooters, Fishers and Farmers' MLC Robert Borsak
"I think what we saw with the state election was it was a very good election for incumbents, not many sitting members lost their seats and the feedback I got from booths was voters were voting for the candidate rather than the parties," he said.
"One of the lessons out of that was if you're a hardworking local member who fights and delivers for your area then it is possible to get electoral success.
The election will pit Mr Gee against Mr Romano and Labor candidate Jess Jennings, while Mr Borsak confirmed the SFF will run a small candidates across the country in selected seats, as well as gun for seats in the senate.
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