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Abbott survives leadership challenge

Monday, February 09, 2015 - 01:07

Australia Prime Minister Tony Abbott survives a leadership challenge but support is weak. Katie Sargent reports.

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Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott survived a leadership challenge on Monday following weeks of infighting in his ruling Liberal Party. In a secret ballot party members voted down a motion to unseat him. The vote was 61 to 39, which some political observers said revealed a lack of confidence in Abbott. The motion was brought after mounting criticism of his leadership, culminating in his award of an Australian knighthood to Queen Elizabeth's husband, Prince Philip (SOUNDBITE)(English) AUSTRALIAN PRIME MINISTER TONY ABBOTT SAYING: "Obviously I accept that the last few weeks have been difficult weeks for the Government. But there have also been difficult weeks for the Australian people, because the people expect and deserve a Government which is getting on with the job. I am confident that have we have put this time behind us and I am confident that as of today, we are back at work for the people of Australia." Removing Abbott would have required more than 51 votes. Abbott said the call for a leadership vote was a "very chastening experience" and vowed to be more consultative in his approach.

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Abbott survives leadership challenge

Monday, February 09, 2015 - 01:07