Despite being branded a “miserable ghost” by fellow former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull on Friday, it seems that ex-Labor leader Kevin Rudd is keen to extend an olive branch to his former rival as he invited the recently ousted PM over for a cup of tea.
Responding to reports that Turnbull had taken aim at him and Tony Abbott during a speech to young leaders in New York at the end of last week, Rudd took to Twitter to remind Turnbull that he was also in the big apple if he fancied a cuppa.
“Dear Malcolm. A quick reality check on ‘miserable ghosts’,” he wrote on Twitter. “1st, having told the world you’ve left politics behind, you seem to be in the media every day talking about it. 2nd, in case you didn’t notice, I left parliament for [New York] 5 years ago. Why not come over for a cuppa?”
Dear Malcolm. A quick reality check on "miserable ghosts": 1st, having told the world you've left politics behind, you seem to be in the media every day talking about it. 2nd, in case you didn't notice, I left parliament for NYC 5 years ago. Why not come over for a cuppa? pic.twitter.com/1hjeIJLnDJ
— Kevin Rudd (@MrKRudd) October 1, 2018
Rudd’s comments come just one day after The Australian reported that Turnbull had branded former PMs Kevin Rudd and Tony Abbott “miserable ghosts”, as well as calling the recent leadership crisis, which saw him booted out of The Lodge, “crazy”.
Referencing Abbott and Rudd, Turnbull reportedly used them as examples when explaining the importance of not letting hate drive you in politics.
“When you stop being prime minister, that’s it,” he said in a recording, obtained by Nine. “There is no way I’d be hanging around like lipid [an insoluble fat] Kevin Rudd or Tony Abbott. Seriously, these people are like, sort of miserable, miserable ghosts.”
Turnbull also pointed out that he may have been behind 51 to 49 per cent in the published polls, but he was actually ahead by four points in internal tracking polls.
“For reasons that they’ve not been able to explain, you know, there was an element of the party and of the media that wanted to blow the government up, and they did,” he added. “And of course, they didn’t get their guy up, they got ScoMo [Scott Morrison].”
Turnbull’s comments related to the fact that Rudd opted to remain in parliament after he was rolled as prime minister and replaced by Julia Gillard. However, he was then given another crack at the leadership after another spill, before losing the 2013 election to Tony Abbott.
Abbott also chose to stay in parliament after he was replaced by Turnbull in a Liberal party room spill in 2015. He is currently a backbencher in the Morrison government and holds the position of Special Envoy for Indigenous Affairs.