The picture tells the story – it’s plain to see that Malcolm Turnbull is furious as he has words with Opposition whip Warren Entsch yesterday. The email names Malcolm Turnbull, Alby Schultz, John Forrest and Luke Hartsuyker for missing a division late on Tuesday night which resulted in the Coalition losing a vote on a minor issue. “This behaviour is totally unacceptable and shows great disrespect to their colleagues and the Coalition as a whole” it said. Malcolm was furious and has taken it very personally, believing it was leaked deliberately to make him look bad. Some cynics might say the email was payback for Malcolm’s outspoken comments on the Coalition’s climate change policy last week.
The day before, at Tuesday's party meeting, Tony had a difference of opinion with Senator Minchin who wants to support a Labor bill that will phase in over five years, an excise increase on LPG, LNG and compressed natural gas. Minchin said the excise increase was a Howard policy and the Coalition should support it.
Tony argued that circumstances had changed and that the focus on the cost of living was a political winner for the Coalition and it made sense not to increase tax on cleaner fuels. He told Senator Minchin that faced with a choice between ''policy purity and pragmatic political pragmatism, I'll take pragmatism every time."