A loyal Victorian Liberal writes:
Re: your report that Malcolm Turnbull “only made it to the last few minutes of the function” in La Trobe. What a load of rubbish! I was at the function and can inform you and your readers that Mr Turnbull was at the venue mixing it with guests when I arrived (which was 7:10pm for a 7.30pm start), and was still there, settled in deep conversation when I left at around 10:30pm.
In addition, Turnbull, who sounded as though he was suffering from a bout of the flu, gave a 45-minute address, answered questions from the floor for at least another 45 minutes, and then proceeded to do the rounds of the room after the formalities – visiting most of the 12 tables at the function. All up he was at it for at least three hours, despite probably just wishing he could take Lemsip and have a good lie down.
As for the cheap shot re Turnbull on a train – I think you will find that Crikey itself has reported on numerous occasions that he has always had a thing for public transport, no matter which city he is in.
Malcolm Turnbull writes:
Your intelligence network was right about my catching the train to Narre Warren. However your informant obviously wasn’t at the Liberal Party function because while the train was running ten minutes late, my friend Jason Wood picked me up at the station and we got to the function in time for a pre-dinner drink with his supporters and well before we sat down for our dinner.
I had a chat to a man on the train with me and he told me the service was usually very reliable, 50 minutes from Flinders St to Narre Warren which is certainly better than driving in peak hour. Puzzled why someone would tell you I arrived for the last ten minutes of the function. I was the speaker at the dinner.
A member of the Athenaeum Club writes:
Poor Malcolm Turnbull (of Narre Warren fame) must have felt a little better later in the day last Thursday, after an early evening visit to the Athenaeum Club. Not quite what it was in its heyday, but probably more agreeable to the man from Wentworth than Jason Wood’s electorate.
And an eagle-eyed adman writes:
On Thursday morning I saw Malcolm Turnbull asking directions on how to catch the tram to Doncaster.
CRIKEY: Our Liberal spy has been sent to Siberia, but full marks to Malcolm for sampling Melbourne’s metropolitan rail service, which is run by a French conglomerate that also happens to be the world’s biggest water service company and second largest waste management company.