Conservative Liberal senator Cory Bernardi has blamed Saturday’s uncertain election result on Malcolm Turnbull’s shift away from the party’s conservative base.
“We had our chief pollster say conservatives don’t matter, we’ve had a leader say Pauline Hanson isn’t welcome in our parliament, which is a direct insult to all those who may share her concerns,” Senator Bernardi told the Adelaide Advertiser.
He said people must be held to account for Saturday’s result, saying the Liberal brand had been damaged and the signs had been “very, very clear for a long time”.
Jamie Briggs, who lost his formerly safe Adelaide seat of Mayo to the Nick Xenophon Team, backed the prime minister who dumped him from the front bench in December over an inappropriate incident.
“I do think Malcolm has got the capacity to be an incredible prime minister,” he told The Australian.
He said he was concerned about the uncertainty caused by the success of minor parties and the prospect of another hung parliament.
“In that sense, I am very fearful about where politics is going. I hope we can find a model and I hope we can work through this,” he said.