John ‘Wacka’ Williams has slammed his colleagues in the Liberal Party after a rocky two weeks of in-house quarrels.
The Nationals senator said he was “fed up” that arguments between former Prime Minister Tony Abbott and his successor Malcolm Turnbull were sucking all the media oxygen.
“In politics division is death,” he told The Examiner on Thursday.
“Shorten’s getting a free ride into the prime minister’s position with no retention on his policies because of the constant focus on the division in the Liberal Party.”
He also called on Mr Abbott to back off after constantly critiquing the direction of the Turnbull government.
“I think what Tony needs to do is just simply be more of a team player, as we were with Tony when he was prime minister,” Senator Williams said.
“I feel sorry for the MPs that are on very small margins in their electorates.
“They are going to lose their seats in the next election if this division keeps going.”
They are going to lose their seats in the next election.Senator John Williams
Senator Williams said more attention should be put on what the Coalition is achieving – particularly in the bush.
“Things are going really well in regional Australia,” he said.
“We’ve got a good budget for regional Australia and finally some proper money to build an inland rail system [between Melbourne and Brisbane] that has been talked about since 1902.”
He said it was time the government got down to business and “back on the job of running the nation and building a better country for all Australians”.
“We were elected to govern, not to fight and it annoys me that there’s a lot of division in the Liberal Party,” he said. “It’s taking headlines in all the media.
“There are many good things in the budget such as childcare, infrastructure projects and the education package that has hardly been talked about in the media.
“It’s time for our liberal colleagues to pull together, work as a team and get on with the job they are meant to be doing which is to run the country.”
Senator Williams also pointed to Mr Pyne’s remarks on same-sex marriage as “stirring” up trouble.
He said a change of policy would be breaching the Coalition agreement.
“Let’s get back on the job of addressing the issues that people are concerned about,” he said.