Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (left) and Member for Dickson Peter Dutton in Brisbane earlier this week. Picture: Glenn Hunt/AAP
Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull (left) and Member for Dickson Peter Dutton in Brisbane earlier this week. Picture: Glenn Hunt/AAP

Poll warning from Dutton: ‘We’re up against it’

SENIOR Coalition Minister Peter Dutton says Australia "is on track for a Shorten-led government", as unrest continues among Liberals as the 30th-straight negative Newspoll looms.

But Mr Dutton said the Coalition could still win the next election with a John Howard-era turnaround.

He also blamed "problems around personal issues" for taken the oxygen out of the government's message, in an oblique reference to the Barnaby Joyce affair.

Brisbane federal MP Peter Dutton says the Coalition may be defeated by Labor at the next election. File picture: Lukas Coch/AAP
Brisbane federal MP Peter Dutton says the Coalition may be defeated by Labor at the next election. File picture: Lukas Coch/AAP

"At the moment we're on track for a Shorten-led government and that would be a disaster for the community," he told radio 2GB this morning.

"I've watched, particularly over the Howard years, where things can change. A week's a long time, a day's a long time in politics.

"We're up against it at the moment but we've got a good story to tell in terms of management of the economy."

He said the government had done "a remarkable job" after inheriting a large debt and a Senate "near impossible to work with".

"Over the course of the couple of years, the dramas in the Senate, the problems around personal issues and all the rest of that has taken a lot of oxygen out of the message," Mr Dutton said.

"I don't serve in the Cabinet unless I can be loyal.

"As a team we can defeat Shorten."

He also joked with radio host Ray Hadley that is was "a fair point" he may no longer be the Minister in a few years.

The Coalition has lost 29 straight Newspolls to the Labor Opposition, with the 30th Newspoll due on Monday not expected to show a turnaround.

In 2015 Mr Turnbull challenged then-Prime Minister Tony Abbott for leadership of the Liberal party and used 30 straight Newspoll losses as one of his reasons for doing so.



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