Australia PM Turnbull faces leadership pressure

Posted April 11, 2018

But the former Deputy Prime Minister's comments have been met with criticism, after he lashed out at Mr Turnbull earlier this year in the midst of his affair scandal, claiming the PM was interfering in the National Party's leadership.

Asked whether he felt vindicated by Turnbull also losing 30 Newspolls, Abbott insisted to reporters: "It's not about me, it's got to be about our country", while defending his right to "speak my mind".

"I think Malcolm's not a fool, he'd know that himself", Mr Joyce said.

"I actually think the Australian people want us to focus less on the polls and personalities and a lot more on what we do for the people".

Mr Turnbull's leadership is under a cloud after the coalition government lost 30 Newspolls in a row, the same as one of the metrics he used to topple Tony Abbott in 2015.

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Ironically, the beneficiaries of the 2010 coup are Malcolm (Godwin Gretch) Turnbull and Bill (I'm with the coup) Shorten.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the prime minister had the support of the party. "I'm very confident as we get closer to the election the Australian people will start to focus very much on the alternative, and the alternative is $200 billion of taxes", he said.

They want us to focus on their childcare services, they want us to focus on schools, they want us to focus on hospitals and health, they want us to focus on national security and they want us to ensure that great jobs remain in Australia ...

"It's Mr Turnbull who said 30 Newspolls is a definition of success. That's his problem", Shorten said Monday.

But deputy Liberal leader Julie Bishop is standing by Mr Turnbull, expressing confidence he will lead the party to the next election.

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"The Turnbull Government continues to deliver strong job numbers and when the election is called next year, that is the poll we will be focusing on with the Prime Minister leading the Coalition".

Trotting out Howard-era poll results, Minister for Defence Industry Christopher Pyne said John Howard managed a seven point turnaround from a 48-52 poll result after calling the 2004 election. "The polls are about 50/50 - that's not a bad position to be in", he said.

Education Minister Simon Birmingham said it is possible to turn the polls around, citing the recent South Australian election.

"If you believed the polls, Nick Xenophon was going to be premier a few months ago", he told ABC TV.

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