Malcolm Turnbull tastes his own medicine in battle of Australian polls

Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull

But the former Deputy Prime Minister's comments have been met with criticism, after he lashed out at Mr Turnbull earlier this year in the midst of his affair scandal, claiming the PM was interfering in the National Party's leadership.

"What Australians want us to focus on is their jobs".

Former Nationals leader Mr Joyce - who doesn't have a say on the Liberal leadership - wants to wait until after the budget to make a "fair judgment" on Mr Turnbull's position.

"I'm actually surprised that the polls are as good as they are", he said.

The Prime Minister told the Daily Telegraph he didn't place too much faith in the accuracy of polls.

"That's what I think we need to focus on today, being the best possible government with the strongest possible policies", Mr Abbott told reporters on his annual Pollie Pedal in Victoria.

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten also said he did not look at Newspoll as a measure of success for prime ministers.

"The test is who retains the confidence of the majority of the members in the party room and that's Malcolm Turnbull" she told Channel Seven's Sunrise. "That's his problem", Shorten said Monday. We have lost 30 Newspolls in a row, ' Mr Turnbull said at the time.

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"I don't define my success, or indeed my job, by what Newspoll does", he said.

"Towards the end (of the year) near Christmas you'd have to start asking those around you what do they believe is the proper course of action from that point forward", Mr Joyce said.

Funnily enough, I don't think Joyce was trying to be useful.

The Turnbull government has been plagued with a series of bad news stories at the hands of its senior players, all of which have likely contributed to the consistently poor Newspoll results.

"One of the differences between me and some of my colleagues is that if I've got something to say, I don't ring up a journalist and whisper poison into their ears - I say it up front, openly, and put my name on it", he said.

Peter Dutton told 3AW he had been honest about his ambition to be prime minister but he would not be acting to topple Turnbull. "There's 149 people in federal parliament - I'm one".

"And I think the other 148, if they were being honest, would tell you if the opportunity came their way they'd be interested as well".

Abetz told Sky the leadership was a decision for the party room and he was a "Liberal party loyalist" who respected that decision.

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