Coalition "in dark on ETS"
OPPOSITION emissions trading spokesman Ian Macfarlane has been forced to distribute the Coalition's 2007 election policy supporting an emissions trading scheme to his own back bench, after several MPs suggested an ETS had never been party policy or had been "slipped" past them.
Strong internal opposition is mounting to Malcolm Turnbull's strategy - endorsed by shadow cabinet - of negotiating amendments to the government's ETS next month.
Many senior Coalition members expressed astonishment that some backbenchers appeared intent on "rolling" their already-struggling leader on an issue, when all possible alternative leaders, including Joe Hockey and Tony Abbott, agreed with Mr Turnbull's political strategy.
Backbench dissenters such as Cory Bernardi and Wilson Tuckey seemed to be intent upon "driving the car at high speed into a brick wall in order to test the airbags", one senior Liberal said. Others said the campaign was aimed at forcing shadow cabinet to demand such extensive amendments that the government could never agree to them, achieving the ETS's demise by default.
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