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ABC News Breakfast -

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(generated from captions) Commonwealth pleaders will be

coming to Australia in 2011.

Returning to the implosion of

the Liberal Party and the

struggle for its leadership and

new direction. For more Mitch

Fifield joins us from Canberra.

Thank you for joining us. Good

morning. By your estimation

this morning, who looks to be

the lead candidate to unseat

Malcolm Turnbull? Well, Tony

Abbott has already declared if

the policy in relation to

Labor's ETS doesn't change,

that he's prepared to put his

hand up. He has also indicated

that should Joe Hockey nominate

he is prepared to withdraw. So

I think the take out of all

that is that the party is

looking forward, we're moving

on and looking to the next

leader of the Liberal Party,

whoever that is will have the

complete support of the party

proom. But you need Joe Hockey

to put up his hand. Do you understand he is likely to do

that? We'll have to wait and

see. What do you think? A lot of colleagues have been talking

to jo. He is entitled to

consult his family and think

about it. We'll just have to

wait and see if Joe puts his

hand up, but it would be fair

to say there is a consensus

emerging that Joe has the

qualities of leadership we're

looking for and the skill set

we need to bring the party

together to prosecute the case

about the flaws in the

government's ETS and also to put forward the coalition's

plan for addressing climate

change. Heavy pressure on him

to step up to the plate? Joe is

someone who colleagues respect

enormously and we'd like to see

Joe in a position of

leadership. It remains to be

seen if Joe puts his hand up. Tony Abbott is also someone who

the colleagues have a very high

opinion of. And as I said, Tony

Abbott has indicated that if

Joe Hockey puts his hand up, he

is happy to stand aside. We

want unity. Colleagues are

looking for resolution on

Tuesday and on Tuesday we'll

have a new leader of the

party. Whichever way it goes,

Malcolm Turnbull's over? Well,

the colleagues have moved on.

OK. Up until now at least, Joe

Hockey has been in the same

camp as Malcolm Turnbull when

it comes to supporting the

government's amended emissions

committed to action on climate trading scheme. Joe is

change. In fact the party room

is committed to action on

climate change. One of the

unfortunate things of the last

few days is the depiction by

Malcolm Turnbull of anyone who

has issued with Labor's ETS and

anyone who thinks it's

important to wait and see what

the rest of the world does, as

people who are climate change

deniers. Being in favour of a

delay, of voting for the legislation, doesn't make you a

climate change denier. Being

someone who wants to provide

greater scrutiny to the government's ETS legislation doesn't make you a climate

change denier. The issue is we

want to make sure that it's

action which will be effective

and it's action which won't

come at the expense of

Australian jobs and Australia's

international competitiveness.

What will your new policy on

the emissions trading scheme

be? A number of colleagues are

of the view, as am I, that it's

important to apply greater

scrutiny to this legislation.

One proposal which I support is

referring it to the Senate

Economics Committee for greater

scrutiny to report back after

Copenhagen. We will have then

had the chance to take a closer

look at the legislation. And

we'll also have a much better

idea of what the rest of the

world is doing. I think that's

an appropriate approach. I

don't think any harnl ever came

from applying greater scrutiny

to legislation. I don't think

any harm ever came from having

a better idea of what the rest

of of the world intends to do.

There is no chance that today

this government legislation is

going to be passed by the

Senate? Well, the Senate has a

mind of its own. It'd be a

brave person to plikt what

will happen. Take me inside of

the mind of the Senate this

of the way through the morning. We're only about 10%

amendments. There are hundreds

of amendments being put forward

to these 11 Bills. It's

receive appropriate scrutiny important that those amendments

and they're properly debated.

The Senate doesn't have a

tradition of gagging debate, as

does. I think colleagues from the House of Representatives

all parties would be extremely

reluctant to curtail debate. So

what I expect will happen today

is that the debate will go on.

I wonder if you still really

strategy here. It was think that you're on a winning

interesting to see figures in

the Nielsen poll published in

the fair fakes papers today

showing that 57% of people back

an early election if this

legislation is blocked to in

the Senate. Do you really think

you're on a winning strategy

there? I don't think the

government is likely to go to

the an early election. I don't

think the government relishes

the prospect of defending this

flawed legislation. It's

incumbent upon us as a party to

ahigh the appropriate

scrutiny. So you're calling

its bluff? I don't think a

political party should make its

judgments on policy on the

basis of whether a double

dissolution election is likely

or not. We shouldn't take those

decisions on the basis of

whether or not that gives the

government a trigger for an

early election. It's important

to focus on the national and

getting the policy right and

that's what we intend to do.

It's an interesting position

that the Liberal Party is in

right now. I wonder in your

view how you now believe the

party goes on to heal this

rift. John Howard had the

authority of Prime Minister and

also of being such a

long-standing and successful

leader in bringing together

that sometimes very uneasy

grouping of Liberals and Conservatives. You don't have

that figurehead now, so how do

you bring those two factions if

you like together, and how to

you heal this rift? I think

there is a great sense of

commitment across the party to

get around the next leader, to

support them. To give them the

authority that they need to do

their job. But if there is a

lesson to be learnt from this

recent episode, I think it's

that you firstly have to have a good debate in a party before

you seek to reach a position.

Yes, unity and yes discipline

are important attributes for a

political party, but in the

hierarchy of political virtues,

debate and ideas rank higher.

And you can't call for

discipline and you can't call

for unity before you've

actually had a proper debate

and reached a consensus

position. I think that's a

lesson we've all learnt from

this episode. So Malcolm

Turnbull's high handedness

brought him undone? Well, managing a parliamentary party

requires a union teak set of

sills, and not everyone has

those. I think Tony Abbott has those skills. I think Joe

Hockey has those skills. It's

not ap easy task at the best of

times but you need a leader who

will consult. You need a leader

who will take his colleagues

forward with him. You need a

leader who will reflect the

will of the party room. And I

think Tony Abbott is such a

person. As is Joe Hockey. Good

to talk to you this morning.