World

Cabinet minister urges Australian prime minister to allow leadership vote among lawmakers

  • Former Australian Liberal Party leader and Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks to the media that he asked Prime Minister Tony Abbott to open up the party's leadership to an internal vote at Parliament House in Canberra, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Australia's beleaguered prime minister could face a second challenge to his position this year, as the two-year-old conservative coalition government struggles in opinion polls. (Lukas Coch/AAP Image via AP) NO ARCHIVING, AUSTRALIA OUT, NEW ZEALAND OUT, PAPUA NEW GUINEA OUT, SOUTH PACIFIC OUT

    Former Australian Liberal Party leader and Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull speaks to the media that he asked Prime Minister Tony Abbott to open up the party's leadership to an internal vote at Parliament House in Canberra, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Australia's beleaguered prime minister could face a second challenge to his position this year, as the two-year-old conservative coalition government struggles in opinion polls. (Lukas Coch/AAP Image via AP) NO ARCHIVING, AUSTRALIA OUT, NEW ZEALAND OUT, PAPUA NEW GUINEA OUT, SOUTH PACIFIC OUT  (The Associated Press)

  • FILE - In this Sept. 19, 2014 file photo, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott speaks during a press conference, in Sydney.  Beleaguered Prime Minister Abbott will face a second challenge to his position this year, with a ballot of government colleagues late Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, hours after a senior minister challenged him for his party leadership. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft, File)

    FILE - In this Sept. 19, 2014 file photo, Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott speaks during a press conference, in Sydney. Beleaguered Prime Minister Abbott will face a second challenge to his position this year, with a ballot of government colleagues late Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, hours after a senior minister challenged him for his party leadership. (AP Photo/Rick Rycroft, File)  (The Associated Press)

  • Australia's former Liberal Party leader and Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull walks with his supporters to the Liberal Party meeting that will decide the party leadership as well as the prime minister of the nation at Parliament House in Canberra, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Australia's beleaguered Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been ousted from his position by an internal government challenge and Turnbull has been elected to replace him. (AP Photo/Andrew Taylor)

    Australia's former Liberal Party leader and Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull walks with his supporters to the Liberal Party meeting that will decide the party leadership as well as the prime minister of the nation at Parliament House in Canberra, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015. Australia's beleaguered Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been ousted from his position by an internal government challenge and Turnbull has been elected to replace him. (AP Photo/Andrew Taylor)  (The Associated Press)

Lawmakers in Australia's ruling party are again seeking a review of Prime Minister Tony Abbott's leadership.

Former Liberal Party leader and Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull said he asked Abbott on Monday for a leadership vote as the two-year-old coalition government struggles in opinion polls.

It was not clear how Abbott responded, but he is under intense pressure to prove he has the support of his colleagues.

Abbott defeated Turnbull as party leader in a ballot of lawmakers in 2009 by one vote when the party was in opposition.

Abbott survived a leadership challenge in February when he asked colleagues for six months to turn the polls around.

Turnbull disagrees with Abbott on climate change and wants Australia to replace the British monarch with an Australian president as head of state.