Shorten’s class war and climate change cost Labor: John Howard

John Howard says Bill Shorten was wrong to run a "class warfare" campaign and Labor lost big in Queensland because it didn't support the Adani coalmine.

Former prime minister John Howard says a focus on class warfare and "climate ideology" cost Labor this year's federal election.

Scott Morrison is set to return to power in Canberra after voters in Queensland, NSW and Tasmania rallied behind the Liberal-National coalition.

Former prime minister John Howard has praised Scott Morrison's election campaign.
Source: AAP

"I believe very strongly that (federal Labor leader) Bill Shorten overplayed his hand on the class warfare stuff," Mr Howard told ABC TV on Saturday night.

"Australians believe in egalitarianism. They reject the politics of class division and all this stuff about the big end of town and the envy-driven politics of the Labor Party."

The Liberal Party elder said Queenslanders were "common sense Australians" who worried about job security.

Former Australian Prime Minister John Howard speaks to the media on arrival at the count at the Federal Liberal Reception at the Sofitel-Wentworth hotel.
Source: AAP

"When they saw a Labor Party prepared to destroy jobs in the name of climate ideology in relation to the Adani mine, they said 'That's not for Queensland'," he said.

Mr Howard earlier this week argued there was a "whiff" of 1993 about the election, with one side ahead in the polls but the other gaining ground during the campaign.

Liberal leader John Hewson in 1993 lost the so-called "unloseable election" after he proposed a GST from opposition.

Bill Shorten on election day.
Source: AAP

Mr Howard on Saturday night praised Prime Minister Scott Morrison as an "incredibly effective" leader who spoke clearly and with passion and conviction.

But he wouldn't be drawn on whether Mr Morrison was now the best Liberal leader since he was deposed as prime minister in 2007.

"The last thing I want to do tonight is to compare Liberal leaders," the 79-year-old said.

Published 18 May 2019 at 10:54pm, updated 19 May 2019 at 1:18am