Ex-Australian PM maintains stance of election victory

Canberra, Sep 29 (IANS) Former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott on Tuesday maintained he would have led his Liberal Party to victory in the next election had he not been replaced by the incumbent premier.

Abbott made the remarks during his first radio interview two weeks after being overthrown by current Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull, ABC reported.

He said lagging polls do not always translate to ineffective government.

“You can be not especially popular in these personal approval ratings and at the same time lead a very effective political operation,” Abbott told 2GB radio.

“It’s difficult to do the right thing by the country when you have ‘death by polls’.”

Abbott pointed out there had been no policy change in key areas – including border protection, national security, climate change or same-sex marriage – as a result of his departure.

“If you listen to the prime minister and the treasurer they’re even using exactly the same phrases that Joe Hockey and I were using just a fortnight ago,” he said.

He did not reveal his plans for the future, but said he would decide around Christmas time.

“I’m too young to retire, I’ve still got something to contribute to public life,”Abbott added.

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