Malcolm turns up the bull

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Cartoon by Bruce Keogh/

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull gives an exclusive interview on his fabulous prime ministership and those 33 pesky Newspolls.  

JOURNALIST: Mr Turnbull, you are now staring at 33 consecutive Coalition Newspoll losses in a row. This surpasses Abbott's 30 losses you used as a benchmark trigger for your successful leadership coup in 2015, does it not? 

TURNBULL: Yes that’s true, but I recently expressed regret for leveraging that number 30. I won the spill and got to be Prime Minister — that’s all I care about. If you in the media think the number 30 is to be my nemesis, you are sadly delusional. I, on the other hand, am happily delusional.


TURNBULL: Indeed. God willing, the Coalition would win the next Newspoll if only the public would start listening to me. Maybe they get distracted by my charisma and tune out in stunned awe of me?

JOURNALIST: Maybe your credibility is already ruined?

TURNBULL: I have apologised. For a prime minister to be so humbly apologetic is so refreshing in the public eye. So, my credibility has benefited from my brilliant bleeding-heart expression of remorse.

JOURNALIST: Are you surprised at your poor performance?

TURNBULL: Worse than surprised, I would say shocked. I did not expect to lose even one poll. By the way, how dare you call my performance “poor”?

JOURNALIST: Why are you shocked?

TURNBULL: I thought Mr Abbott was unfit to be prime minister, whereas I am the perfect fit. I am a smoothie. I look smooth and I talk smooth. I am far more statesmanlike and cultivated. I don’t spend my life riding bikes and beach parading in budgie smugglers rather than running the country. And I don’t bite into raw onions. I look and behave like the real deal as Prime Minister of Australia.

JOURNALIST: You certainly have a healthy ego!

TURNBULLThank you, I do take good care of it.

JOURNALIST: How do you think the average Australian perceives you?

TURNBULL: I am a humble, sincere and consummate media performer, as this interview is demonstrating. I am filthy rich, so I am not in this for the money. The mob thinks it is out of dedication to create a better Australia, but I have not a clue how to make it better. How can you improve on perfection when I am running the country?

JOURNALIST: The “mob” as you call them does not agree. You lead Bill Shorten as preferred PM by only a narrow margin, despite your sustained “Kill Bill” strategy.

TURNBULL: Bill is full of shallow Labor clichés and rhetoric. I say to my fellow Australians: don’t kill the goose that laid the golden egg. Trust me to deliver.

JOURNALIST: When you came to the leadership, you were the great white hope for a progressive, enlightened nation. You were so far left that even Labor and Greens voters believed in you. What happened to the Malcolm Turnbull who promised mature, adult conversation with the Australian public? The one who was a champion of climate action.

TURNBULL: My party always knew I was a big risk — too "left". By the time the 2016 election came around, I had been white-anted. The progressive Malcolm Turnbull was reduced to backpedalling so hard, you could smell the burning rubber. My credibility had been torpedoed and it never recovered. That explains the 31 Newspoll losses. I am not to blame. Poor fools, my party.

JOURNALIST: But you did win the 2016 election.

TURNBULL: Yes, with a one-seat majority. If I had been given free rein, we would have won in a landslide.

JOURNALIST: Don't you think the Australian public is fed up with politicians with inflated egos and party infighting?

TURNBULL: Yes, I agree. If only my party would respect my political genius and let me run things my way, everything would be perfect and we would be a mile ahead in the polls.

JOURNALIST: But your leadership is now under threat.

TURNBULL: You in the media love to fuel speculation. To name ratbag, would-be contenders like Bishop, Dutton, Abbott and Morrison only fuels speculation and disunity. That awful Twitter hashtag #LibSpill doesn't help. Why don’t people just shut up let me get on with my role as the consultative, consensus-driven Prime Minister, driving a united Coalition Government?

JOURNALIST: Prime Minister, you have rendered me speechless.

TURNBULL: Then this interview has been a great personal victory. I want a media lost for words. Media silence would be deafening.

JOURNALIST: Thank you for your time, Mr Turnbull.


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