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Abbott less liked than Pyne

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Prime Minister Tony Abbott says he’s finally managed to attract more protesters than his education minister, Christopher Pyne.

In in a joke-ladened introduction to a speech to party faithful at the South Australian Liberal Party annual general meeting on Saturday, Mr Abbott said he started his visit to the state with a trip to Adelaide University on Thursday night.

He said 400 friends gathered inside the lecture theatre and 500 outside.

“Thanks to the wonderful white horses of South Australian police, neither group of friends met that night,” he said.

“But I’ve finally drawn a bigger protest than Christopher Pyne.”

Mr Pyne routinely attracts protesters objecting to the government’s proposed increases to the costs of degrees.

Mr Abbott said he was impressed by the achievements of South Australia, a great state held back by a bad Labor state government.

“South Australia exports wine to France, it exports spaghetti to Italy and it exports RM Williams shoes to the wider world,” he said.