Melbourne: As per the claims of a contentious new book, Australian Opposition leader Tony Abbott is the most ‘dangerous’ man to ever seek the office of Prime Minister.
Academic Susan Mitchell’s book, ‘Tony Abbott: A Man’s Man’, is only the second book after Michael Duffy’s work, Latham and Abbott in 2004.
Mitchell has argued that her case was backed up by a wealth of material, including media reports, speeches and insights from Abbott’s 2009 manifesto, Battlelines, according to AAP report.
Although Abbott has surpassed Julia Gillard as preferred Prime Minister in recent polls, Mitchell said he is a sore loser, has a sense of entitlement and is driven by rage.
“He is extremely dangerous because he is a man of the past,” Mitchell told an Australian newspaper.”I can’t believe we could end up having a Prime Minister who doesn’t believe a woman should have control over her own body.”
“The fact that he came within a whisker of becoming Prime Minister in 2010 makes it even more important that we look behind the labels of the Mad Monk and Captain Catholic used by his critics, to understand what he really does believe and what motivates him in his ambition to lead Australia in the 21st century,” she wrote.
Asked whether she started the book with the aim of doing a hatchet job on Abbott, Mitchell told AAP, “No. I was alarmed that he got as close as he did (at the 2010 election).
“I thought to myself, ‘I’d better go back and have another look and work out whether these things are just my impression or whether there are facts to back it up.”
Mitchell, who has known the Liberal leader for almost two decades, traces Abbott’s life from his boyhood into his training as a Catholic priest, right-wing student activism, work as a Liberal staffer and entry into Parliament.
Her overall image of Abbott the man is one of being “pugnacious, aggressive and arrogant”, wedded to the outdated values of his ‘male mentors’ in his narrow Catholic upbringing.