The Nationals member for Page Kevin Hogan said his party did not get a vote on Liberal Party leadership.
The Nationals member for Page Kevin Hogan said his party did not get a vote on Liberal Party leadership. Jay Cronan

Another prime minister fails popularity test

THE one thing Prime Minister Tony Abbott cannot find is a trough in his popularity, it just keeps going down.

Despite being part of a coalition government with the Liberal Party, The Nationals member for Page Kevin Hogan said his party did not get a vote on Liberal Party leadership.

"Warren Truss and Barnaby Joyce are my leaders," Mr Hogan said.

He said The Nationals had their own parliamentary meetings as well as joint meetings with the Liberals.

Mr Hogan said the two parties did not like to take their arguments public and preferred to keep them behind closed doors.

"The Nationals had good wins," Mr Hogan said.

Mr Hogan said two of their wins were blocking ADM buying GrainCorp and blocking the Abbott's signature Paid Parental Leave scheme.

In November 2013 the government rejected ADM's $3.4 billion offer for Australian grain-storage company GrainCorp.

Nationals leader Warren Truss said it was important to maintain Australia's food security.

"We didn't like the paid parental leave scheme, especially in its original form," Mr Hogan said.

"We thought it was discriminatory to country women."

The original paid parental leave scheme built on paying eligible mothers the minimum wage, $640.90, for a maximum of 18 weeks to paying 26 weeks of paid parental leave at their actual wage or the national minimum wage, plus superannuation, with women earning $150,000 to receive a maximum of $75,000.

"I, as a local member, am trying to get as much done for my community as possible," Mr Hogan said.

When asked if he liked Mr Abbott's leadership, he said: "I like Tony Abbott as a person and as a government, I think we can always do better."

Member for Cowper Luke Hartsuyker was still on leave and unavailable for comment.

PRIME MINISTER'S APPROVAL
Total approve
November 39% December 32% January 37%
Total disapprove
November 55% December 55% January 53%
From Essential Report



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