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As the leadership crisis engulfs the Australian Government…

Turnbull braces for leadership challenge

Simon Benson, Geoff Chambers, The Australian

Malcolm Turnbull has lost the confidence of half of his Liberal Party cabinet colleagues as the Prime Minister’s backers admit they are bracing for a leadership challenge from Home Affairs Minister and leading Queensland conservative Peter Dutton.

As the leadership crisis engulfs the government, sources close to the Prime Minister were yesterday briefing that they were expecting a leadership challenge as early as today. Liberal MPs last night claimed that Mr Turnbull had begun calling colleagues to shore up support.

Mr Dutton’s camp believed that it could get to the required 43 votes to roll Mr Turnbull…

Peter Dutton may be ineligible to sit in Parliament. His lawyers say clearly no. Other lawyers say “Maybe”.

Anne Twomey, The Conversation

Section 44(v) says that any person who “has any direct or indirect pecuniary interest in any agreement with the Public Service of the Commonwealth” is disqualified from sitting as a member of parliament.

Dutton, as recorded in the parliamentary register of interests, is the beneficiary of a discretionary family trust. This trust, through its trustee, apparently owns two childcare centres in Queensland. The allegation is that since July 2, 2018, the trust, through its childcare centres, has agreements with the public service to provide childcare services in exchange for childcare subsidies.

The Liberal Party meet again today. The path is not obvious. Legal technicalities have run like a virus through parliament lately.

Would you like 90 seats with that?

The hate media portray the man who won by the largest electoral margin in 20 years as a loser.

Chris Kenny: The Australian

All of this will make many voters wonder why the Liberals wouldn’t, instead, go back to Tony Abbott. Like Kevin Rudd before him, he would be reclaiming the job that was cruelly ripped away from him. While he has never been popular, he is a known quantity and the public would understand the natural justice in his return. Voters gave him a landslide victory in 2013 and he is revered by friend and foe alike as an effective campaigner. Abbott would also bring enormous experience to the job.

To my mind, it has always made most sense that if Turnbull imploded or resigned, the party would return to Abbott. No other contenders have imposed themselves on the party or the public. Yet even Abbott now scoffs at the suggestion.

Abbott says, rightly, it should be about policies not politicians

Pat Griffiths, The Australian:

“It’s not about personalities. It’s not about him, it’s not about me,” Mr Abbott told reporters in Canberra on Monday.

Ending subsidies for renewable energy, stopping price gouging by energy retailers and locking in new baseload power were next on his list.

Among other missteps, the government should withdraw from the Paris agreement on climate change.

“The only way we can win the next election is to have a contest over policy not personalities,” Mr Abbott said.

Dutton hasn’t shown he can take on the Global Bullies yet in the national arena.

Few are true leaders, speaking out unapologetically as a skeptic.

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