Malcolm Turnbull

PM denies verbal attack on Tas treasurer

Scott Morrison has denied verbally attacking Tasmanian Treasurer Peter Gutwein. (AAP)

Prime Minister Scott Morrison is the subject of another leak from 'senior Liberal sources' playing up his predecessor's record in office.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has rejected "rubbish" claims he labelled the Tasmanian treasurer a beggar during an expletive-laden tirade about the GST carve-up.

Senior Liberal sources have told News Corp Mr Morrison - who was then federal treasurer - was pulled from negotiations by Malcolm Turnbull after the verbal assault.

"No, that's rubbish," Mr Morrison told reporters in Canberra on Wednesday.

Mr Morrison allegedly called Mr Gutwein a "f**king mendicant", another word for a beggar.

Labor Deputy Leader Tanya Plibersek said harsh words were often spoken between state and federal ministers during heated negotiations.

"I'm not beyond using the occasional swear word myself, I can confess, so I'm not 'judgey' about that" she told Sky News.

"But I think if Scott Morrison wants to present a certain image to the Australian people of being warm and cuddly now, he ought to deal with his temper, he's got quite a temper on him."

Details of the alleged exchange follow a recent run of leaks playing up Mr Turnbull's record in office.

Mr Turnbull was forced to resign during a Liberal leadership stoush in Canberra last month, clearing the field for Mr Morrison to take the top job ahead of rival Peter Dutton.

Mr Gutwein has not directly denied the claims saying only that he enjoys "a constructive and positive working relationship" with Mr Morrison, according to News Corp.

At the time, the federal government was considering the distribution of GST revenue to the states and territories amid ongoing claims by Western Australia that it was being ripped off.

In 2015, Mr Gutwein himself labelled the WA government "mendicants" who should "put away their begging bowl and stop coming to other states and territories asking us to fix a budget problem they have largely created themselves".

Earlier this year, the coalition government under Mr Turnbull announced a plan to overhaul the GST distribution, promising WA extra funds along with boosts for other states.

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