Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull abandons greenhouse gas target to prevent conservative revolt

Australian prime minister abandons climate change targets | TheHill

Energy policy, Pauline Hanson and Tony Abbott are all contributing factors to Turnbull's woes, Professor Jennifer Curtin says. Many were looking to Peter Dutton, the hardline...

Coincidentally, Turnbull as opposition leader in November 2009 faced a spill motion.

The vote this morning confirms Mr Dutton has the backing of a significant group in the party room - mostly conservatives - to replace Mr Turnbull as PM. Australians can not reasonably be asked to put their trust in Turnbull at the next election if he can not even claim that from close to half of his own colleagues.

Malcolm Turnbull has defeated Peter Dutton 48-35 after throwing the leadership open in a dramatic surprise move to catch his party enemies off guard.

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If Mr Dutton wins today's spill he will become Australia's sixth prime minister in just eight years. However the pair then swapped again three years later with Rudd resuming the role of PM.

The concerns have been fuelled by fear among Queensland seat holders, who have been thrown into a panic after the plunge in the Liberal National Party vote in the recent Longman byelection. He called a spill in February 2015, but it wasn't until September that Malcolm Turnbull finally moved after Abbott had lost 32 Newspolls in a row.

He said although most government lawmakers supported the target of reducing Australia's greenhouse gas emissions by 26 per cent below 2005 levels, that support was not enough.

On Monday, Mr Turnbull attempted to blunt conflict within the government by abandoning plans to set an emissions reduction target in legislation.

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He told Sky News on Monday: 'Peter Dutton is doing a very good job, Malcolm Turnbull is doing a good job, I think people now want this to settle down'.

"We're for lower prices, Mr Shorten is for higher prices", he said.

Mr Turnbull and Mr Dutton are both declining to speak at this time.

Former deputy prime minister Barnaby Joyce yesterday backed Mr Turnbull to remain as leader and welcomed the Government's changes on the contentious energy policy.

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