Men overboard? | Speculation two more ministers are about to abandon ship
Two more cabinet ministers are reportedly considering ditching politics ahead of the upcoming federal election.
It’s believed Defence Industry Minister Steven Ciobo will announce his resignation on Saturday.
Macquarie National News Political Editor Michael Pachi has received word Defence Minister Christopher Pyne could follow suit and abandon ship.
Click PLAY below to hear Michael Pachi break the news
But Liberal colleague Simon Birmingham has attempted to shut down the rumours at a media conference this morning.
With polls suggesting the Coalition is in for a significant election defeat in May, Pyne and Ciobo would be the latest in a string of government resignations.
BREAKING | Political Editor @michaelpachi understands cabinet ministers Christopher Pyne and Steven Ciobo will announce their resignation from politics tomorrow.
— 2GB 873 (@2GB873) March 1, 2019
It started with Liberal MP Julia Banks who moved to the crossbench back in November.
Jobs and Industrial Relations Minister Kelly O’Dwyer, Human Services Minister Michael Keenan, Indigenous Affairs Minister Nigel Scullion and former foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop have all announced they will quit politics at the election.
It’s expected former minister Craig Laundy could also jump ship before the May poll.
Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has seized on the news, saying Coalition MP’s don’t believe they can win.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison has refused to speculate on the issue.
Chris Smith crosses live to Townsville to hear Mr Morrison’s blunt responses to journalists’ questions.
But political commentator Peta Credlin says his refusal to comment is suspect.
“That gives a lot of currency there to the speculation that one or both are going.
“Call me cynical, but I can read Prime Minister code and certainly one of them’s going, whether it’s two will be interesting.”
Click PLAY below to listen to the full interview