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Howard says conservatives welcome in Libs

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July 14, 2017

Former prime minister John Howard says the Liberal Party will always be a home for conservatives.

Former prime minister John Howard says there will always be a place for conservatives in the Liberal Party.

Speaking just days after Malcolm Turnbull's appeal to the "sensible centre", Mr Howard insisted the party is made up of both classical liberal and conservative traditions.

"Let me say to people in this country who regard themselves as conservative, you are always welcome in the Liberal party," Mr Howard said at a United States Studies Centre event in Sydney on Thursday night.

"The Liberal party and the National party are the natural and most productive homes for conservatives in this country."

It comes amid a war of words between current Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and predecessor Tony Abbott about the definition of the Liberal Party.

Mr Turnbull declared the Liberal party was not a conservative one, and instead sat in "the sensible centre", during a speech to a London think-tank earlier this week.

Mr Abbott recently vowed to be a strong conservative voice, while former Liberal senator Cory Bernadi left the party to set up his own Australian Conservatives.

However, Mr Howard warned supporters to stay away from "alternative conservative configurations", saying that to join such groups would "end in tears".

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