‘If I were the prime minister…’ Tony Abbott responds to Turnbull’s Bali trip
Tony Abbott believes a minister should be sent to a climate change conference in Bali next week.
His comments come after former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull was hand-picked to attend an Our Ocean Legacy summit in Indonesia.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison is defending the decision, saying it’s in the “national interest”.
But the PM’s move has infuriated some Coalition MPs who believe Mr Turnbull shouldn’t be rewarded, considering he refused to help the Liberal campaign in the Wentworth by-election.
Former prime minister Tony Abbott tells Ben Fordham he would’ve approached the matter differently.
“As you can imagine, I’m all in favour of making good use of former prime ministers.
“But I’ve got to say, if I were the prime minister I would have sent a minister to this conference because only a minister can really speak for the government.”
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When it comes to the Wentworth by-election, which the Liberals are likely to lose, Mr Abbott says he’s “disappointed” in the former PM’s silence.
“Dave Sharma was a terrific candidate, an outstanding Australian.
“I think it would have helped if the former member had thrown his would-be successor a bit of encouragement in those last final few days.”