Angry response to Turnbull's threat
Nationals Senate leader Barnaby Joyce told The Australian Online today the bottom line was that Mr Turnbull “is not the leader of my party”.
And rebel Liberal MP Mr [Wilson] Tuckey has fired back on calls he fall into line, warning Mr Turnbull that the last leader who staked his leadership on climate change, Brendan Nelson, ended up losing it.
Mr Turnbull warned rebel Liberal MPs, including Mr Tuckey and Cory Bernardi, today that those who continue to talk publicly were “undermining the electoral prospects of their colleagues, particularly in marginal seats”.
Suggesting he might quit if he cannot reach consensus in the partyroom, he warned he cannot lead a Liberal Party that is determined to “do nothing” about climate change.
“I understand the right of Malcolm as leader of the Liberal Party to guide it as he thinks is right but Malcolm is not leader of my party,” Senator Joyce said.
“The leader of my party is Warren Truss and the Nationals have been consistent and we do not believe an emissions trading scheme is a good idea. It's a massive tax that will have no effect.”
Mr Tuckey said the Coalition could not save Australian jobs by amending the Rudd Government's ETS as, at the best, such protection was on borrowed time.
“If the leader wants to threaten the party room with, "Follow me, I'm standing on the edge of a cliff and we've all got to follow", that's a matter for him,” he told The Australian Online.
“Let the Australian people decide. We knock it back, we put up a credible alternative and it's a referendum on an emissions trading scheme.
“But if it goes to a double dissolution election, big business ought to get off its backside and tell people what it's all about and not lobby us to get a special deal for them.”
A referendum on the ETS - now that would be fun! Interesting times.
Read it here.