Coalition backbencher Michelle Landry has described the government’s efforts at selling its agenda as “wishy-washy” in the wake of a number of setbacks for the Prime Minister’s team.
The Nationals member for Capricornia said the government needed to focus following the state and territory rejection of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s income tax plan.
Her comments also follow a drop in polling, with the Coalition falling behind Labor on a two-party preferred basis for the first time since Mr Turnbull became leader.
Ms Landry told the ABC the government needed to “buckle down” and focus on getting its message through.
“I think it is coming across to the public that we are a little bit wishy-washy,” she said.
“There are a lot of positives there with what we want to do with the innovation and we’ve had some great success, but it seems to be getting lost.”
Ms Landry also cited the influence of the 24-hour news cycle in the government struggling to get its policies across.
“We’ve got to get out there, promote our policies,” she said.
“I would hate to see us lose, yes, because we’re off message or something like that.”
Ms Landry said the economy should remain the focus following the “wake-up call” of Tuesday’s Newspoll.
Honeymoon over for PM, says Andrews
Dumped Abbott government minister Kevin Andrews also voiced concern over the latest polling, suggesting the honeymoon was finished for Mr Turnbull.
“Polls go up and down — when any new leader comes in there’s a honeymoon period,” Mr Andrews said.
“Obviously Mr Turnbull has had a honeymoon period but now as we get closer to an election Australians want to concentrate on the choice between Mr Turnbull and Mr Shorten.”
Mr Andrews, who made the comments while completing the annual Pollie Pedal fundraiser alongside Tony Abbott, made headlines earlier this week for indicating he would be prepared to serve as prime minister.