Tuesday, 3 February 2015

Abbott states that the people elected him prime minister. No they didn't, Tony.

It's the people that hire, and frankly it's the people that should fire
[Prime Minister Tony Abbott spinning a line at the National Press Club, 2 February 2015]

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott has gone all presidential again. 

Trying to convince everyone that the nation directly elected him as prime minister, when both he and every voter in the country knows that a prime ministership is exclusively within the gift of the political party which wins the right to form government at a federal general election.

The people have no say.

Perhaps he is laying the groundwork for one of the arguments he will continue to use this week in the hope of stopping a leadership spill in the near future.

A spill is reportedly being discussed as ‘Team Abbott’ is not happy with its wayward captain……..

The Sydney Morning Herald 1 February 2015:

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has called a crunch two-day meeting of his federal cabinet designed to thrash out a policy agenda for 2015 and confront the political issues dogging his government.
News of the meeting comes as a government backbencher said Mr Abbott should not be challenged for the leadership, warning any change should occur without the party room having to knife a first-term prime minister and that "mature, careful and selfless consideration" was now needed about the Coalition's future.
The comments suggest the backbench could push for Mr Abbott to stand down as Prime Minister to avoid a damaging leadership spill…..
Mr Abbott is expected to begin the meeting by giving a "state of play" address. That will be followed by each cabinet minister setting out their policy priorities and plans for the next 12 months.
Time has also been set aside for a political discussion, and it is in this portion of the meeting that Mr Abbott is expected to hear the frank views of colleagues dismayed at the precipitous drop in the government's fortunes.
One cabinet minister told Fairfax Media on the condition of anonymity that Mr Abbott's fortunes had moved "dramatically" in recent weeks and confirmed the government's political fortunes would now effectively feature as the top agenda item.
But that same minister stressed that no one was "stalking" Mr Abbott and that it was up to the Prime Minister to turn around his fortunes.
"The question is does he have the confidence of the party room?" the minister asked.
Liberals MPs are openly discussing Mr Abbott's future in the wake of the LNP's devastating rout in the Queensland state election…..
Mr Abbott on Sunday reminded voters he had been elected Prime Minister and said leadership was not a popularity contest.
"The people of Australia elected me as Prime Minister … but in the end government is not a popularity contest it's a competence contest," he said.

Perth Now 1 February 2015:

It is understood more than 30 backbenchers are open to removing Mr Abbott as Prime Minister.
“It’s certainly more than 30,” one MP who asked not to be named said.
“Queenslanders are leading the push now”.
Another MP, who also asked not to be named, said that there could be a special meeting of the party room as early as Tuesday.

The Sydney Morning Herald 1 February 2014:

Liberal Prime Minister Tony Abbott's missteps have begun eroding the party's standing in NSW, eight weeks before Premier Mike Baird faces the electorate and after a dramatic rout in Queensland.
A well-placed source has told Fairfax the party's primary vote in NSW lost two percentage points in the week after Mr Abbott's decision to grant a knighthood to Prince Philip, according to internal polling.
The revelation comes as local Liberal party figures question the extent to which the electoral contagion which routed the Queensland Liberals will spread to NSW…..
Party figures are understood to be considering asking Mr Abbott to avoid campaigning at all in his home state ahead of the March 28 poll.
"You won't be seeing much of Tony Abbott in the NSW campaign, you can be sure of that," said the ABC's election analyst, Antony Green. "That's if he's still Prime Minister"…..

The Sydney Morning Herald 7:10pm 2 February 2015:

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