Tony Abbott has encouraged Coalition MPs to find nicer and more imaginative ways to criticise his leadership.
The Prime Minister’s call comes after an ABC news story reported that unnamed Coalition MPs have described the situation under Mr Abbott as “f***ed” and “an absolute f***ing mess.”
“I’ve been saying all along the government is doing a solid job,” said Mr Abbott during a radio interview.
“My colleagues should have enough imagination and courtesy to think of euphemisms like ‘solid’ and not resort to swearing.”
The Prime Minister said there was no place for swearing in public life.
“You don’t hear me using that sort of bad language. Ever.”
“Except on the cricket field.”
“Or when I’m with Nicola Roxon. But she provoked me.”
When asked how disappointed he was with the MPs’ alleged comments, Mr Abbott replied that he was “pretty solidly disappointed”.
“But that’s not the point.”
“If some MPs think I could be doing things better, they should say so to my solid face. The spineless solids.”
The Prime Minister’s office later advised that Mr Abbott’s comments had been broadcast out of context and that his relationship with the Coalition party room remains solid.
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