Tony Abbott is being urged to quit politics. Picture: AAP
Tony Abbott is being urged to quit politics. Picture: AAP

Calls mount for Tony Abbott to quit politics

THERE are growing calls for Tony Abbott to quit politics after his role in this week's chaotic leadership challenge.

The former prime minister was a frequent critic of Malcolm Turnbull, who rolled him for the top job barely three years ago, and was viewed as a destabilising force in the government's ranks.

Now, the man described by some in the beleaguered Liberal Party as a "wrecker", is being urged to pack it in.

"I think he'll retire at the next election," Queensland MP Andrew Laming told ABC Radio this morning. "I'd encourage him to."

 

Tony Abbott has been a destabilising force in the government since Malcolm Turnbull rolled him for the top job three years ago. Picture: AAP
Tony Abbott has been a destabilising force in the government since Malcolm Turnbull rolled him for the top job three years ago. Picture: AAP

 

It was up to the new, "formidable team" of new Prime Minister Scott Morrison and deputy Josh Frydenberg to pull the party together on policy, he said.

Amanda Vanstone, who was a minister in John Howard's cabinet, said this week's shambolic events had Mr Abbott's finger prints on it.

"The destabilisation has been going on for a long time," Ms Vanstone told ABC.

"All I can tell you is my own experience of Abbott is whatever you do with him, unless he gets his way he'll be disruptive.

"That's my own experience of him. My personal view is putting him in any ministerial position doesn't mean he'll be a team player unless he gets what he wants."

And on The Drum earlier this week, she labelled Mr Abbott a "wrecker".

 

Tony Abbott was a major player in this week’s leadership scuffle, it has been claimed. Picture: Kym Smith
Tony Abbott was a major player in this week’s leadership scuffle, it has been claimed. Picture: Kym Smith

 

Mr Abbott may have chosen to remain in parliament after losing the leadership in 2015, but Mr Turnbull made it clear he would not be sticking around. "Former prime ministers are best out of the parliament," he told reporters on Thursday.

"I don't think there's much evidence to suggest that conclusion is not correct."

 

Tony Abbott has been described as former Howard Government Minister Amanda Vanstone as a “wrecker”. Picture: Ray Strange.
Tony Abbott has been described as former Howard Government Minister Amanda Vanstone as a “wrecker”. Picture: Ray Strange.

 

A party room meeting on Friday afternoon saw Mr Turnbull resign as leader and Liberal MPs vote to install Mr Morrison.

It followed days of uncertainty, an unsuccessful challenge by Peter Dutton and extraordinary scenes in Parliament House.

Speaking to Channel 9 as he left his Canberra apartment this morning, the new PM indicated he could make announcements about his cabinet this week.


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