Libs tell Turnbull to take poll on chin


Liberals say there is no chatter about Malcolm Turnbull’s leadership despite Newspoll losses.Liberals are telling Malcolm Turnbull to cop his expected 30th Newspoll loss in a row “on the chin” but say there is no threat to his leadership.

Mr Turnbull cited former leader Tony Abbott’s 30 consecutive Newspoll losses when he toppled him in September 2015, but he’s now about to face the same benchmark.

Cabinet minister Christopher Pyne insists no one in the community cares about Monday’s two-party preferred vote, which the coalition has not won since 2016.

He says Mr Turnbull will remain as leader, take the coalition to the next election “and win”.

Other Liberals told AAP there was no chatter about Mr Turnbull’s leadership.

They say there is still hope for the prime minister to turn polling around, with Bill Shorten potentially facing some difficult by-elections if more MPs are referred to the High Court over their citizenship.

Conservative WA Liberal MP Andrew Hastie, a good friend of Mr Abbott, said ns would respect Mr Turnbull if he confronted the expected Newspoll loss head on.

He says taking the poll “on the chin” is all that Mr Turnbull can do.

“I don’t think anyone’s entertaining the prospect of Tony returning,” he says.

“He’s a good friend, I have learned a lot from him, but I believe in stable government. I know there’s no chatter.”

Another conservative MP, Craig Kelly, backed Mr Hastie’s comments and told the prime minister to cop the loss and move on.

Mr Turnbull is urging coalition MPs to look beyond Monday’s expected result to the success the government is having with economic growth and jobs.

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