Support for the Turnbull government has taken a dive amid speculation of a possible leadership challenge by Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton, a new poll reveals.
The coalition’s primary vote has dropped from 39 to 33 in just a month, according to the latest Fairfax/Ipsos poll published on Sunday night.
Labor also opened up its advantage over the coalition, now leading 55 per cent to 45 per cent on a two-party preferred basis.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s personal approval also took a battering, falling from 57 to 48 per cent. Bill Shorten’s standing as preferred prime minister rose from 30 to 36 per cent.
The plunge comes as the Liberal Party struggles to achieve internal consensus on the National Energy Guarantee, which has fed speculation Mr Dutton may make a move for the Liberal leadership with the support of conservative colleagues.
The leadership chatter gathered steam after a radio interview last week where Mr Dutton suggested further disagreements could lead to his resignation from cabinet.
Mr Dutton has told the prime minister he did not want to run against him, however he did not rule out a challenge, The Daily Telegraph reported on Monday.