Aussies put out their potatoes for Peter Dutton after failed leadership challenge

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull could have leadership spill on his hands

Australia's Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull survived a leadership challenge Tuesday, defeating a senior minister in an internal government ballot that is unlikely to settle questions of his support.

"I believe I had the best prospect of leading the Liberal Party to success at the next election", Dutton told reporters of his decision to challenge Turnbull for the leadership.

Turnbull won the ballot 48-35, but the episode seriously undermined his position. One lawmaker abstained and another was away on sick leave.

The leadership crisis followed Turnbull's Monday capitulation to the Coalition rebels over energy policy. Mr Turnbull and Mr Dutton are both declining to speak at this time.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said the resignation would not have any impact on the issues the government continues to raise across the ditch.

Fairfax Media understands Mr Turnbull only confided in two people, Ms Bishop and Ms Marino, before setting up the leadership vote. The centre-left opposition Labour Party elected one leader, Kevin Rudd, twice during a chaotic six years in power.

Again, without naming the former leader, Entsch quoted Abbott's remark on Friday that the changes to the National Energy Guarantee were "no way to run a government".

The disunity came to a head on Monday when Turnbull was forced to shelve plans to embed carbon emissions targets in law after a revolt by fellow Liberal politicians.

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Chief among the snipers was former prime minister Tony Abbott, who has rarely ceased attacks on the prime minister since Turnbull unseated him in 2015.

"They want us to know that we should be concentrating on the things that are important to them". Abbott told the ABC outside Parliament House on Monday night.

"It was a conversion of convenience this morning", Mr. Abbott added.

Drum told the room that the leaking against the government and the constant division was a "f--ing disgrace" and he called on those who briefed against the government to reflect on their behaviour. "That's exactly what he's been a wrecker, and he needs to get out of the joint".

Credlin was critical of Turnbull leaving Abbott, Barnaby Joyce and Dutton on the backbench but she said the Coalition's most "urgent job" is to get their "supporters back on side and stem the bleeding to the right".

Dutton failed to rule out a second attempt at seizing the leadership of Australia's ruling Liberal party and instead outlined his alternative policy manifesto following his unsuccessful challenge to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on Tuesday.

A report in The Australian suggests Mr Turnbull had lost confidence of nine Liberal cabinet ministers - half of the Liberal contingent.

Disquiet with Turnbull has been building in recent months, with the government trailing Labor in 38 consecutive opinion polls. Australians are due to hold a general election early next year.

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