Turnbull’s last ditch $7.6b bid to buy election win
MALCOLM Turnbull personally ticked off on a massive $7.6 billion roads and rail package aimed at saving marginal seats across the country as part of his re-election blueprint.
A leaked list reveals a suite of secretly approved infrastructure projects were included in May's Budget for the Coalition to one-by-one unveil in the lead-up to the next election.
Mr Turnbull had overseen a strategic development of 10 major projects which are fully funded and listed in the most recent Budget under "decisions taken but not yet announced".
More than $3 billion will be poured into a host of Western Sydney seats as part of a north-south rail link to create hundreds of jobs and provide a major transport link between the North West, Western Sydney Airport and major southwest growth areas.
It's understood the announcement will be made in conjunction with the NSW government ahead of its re-election campaign when it goes to the polls in March.
Another $1.5 billion will go towards early planning and pre-construction of a high-speed rail network along the east coast, with priority on linking Melbourne, Canberra, Sydney and Newcastle.
A senior Liberal source said: "Others will no doubt claim this stuff as their own but Malcolm had already funded this stuff in the Budget. We were doing it."
"These MPs knew this very stuff was coming yet - and that it had been fully paid for - yet they were still agitating publicly about it."
About $1.6 billion will be poured into key Queensland battlegrounds aimed at saving MPs including George Christensen, Luke Howarth, Michelle Landry and Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton - the man who brought on a leadership challenge but failed to win it.
The leaked list will now deny new Prime Minister Scott Morrison and infrastructure minister deputy PM Michael McCormack of half a dozen strategic "good news" stories across four states in the coming months.
Labor's infrastructure spokesman Anthony Albanese said it was a case of "too little too late" in the lead-up to an election when "they are desperate to hide their failures".