Brekky Wrap: Liberals' Fresh Leadership Push, Trump Slams Cohen, Hurricane Barrels Towards Hawaii
All the news you need to know this Thursday.
Malcolm Turnbull could face a fresh leadership challenge from Peter Dutton as early as Thursday as a group of Liberal MPs push for another party room meeting.
A petition calling for a second vote on the leadership reportedly circulated on Wednesday night, after the prime minister defeated Dutton by 48 votes to 35 in a snap ballot on Tuesday. But it didn't force any action.
At least 43 signatures -- a majority of the party room -- are needed to bring on the meeting, with media reports suggesting up to nine MPs have signed it, despite Dutton's campers suggesting they have the numbers or "are very close". The petition has not been made public.
Meanwhile, Attorney-General Christian Porter has reportedly called on the government's chief to lawyer for advice on Dutton's constitutional status, after Network Ten reported his business interests could warrant his disqualification from parliament.
In Washington, The White House has pushed back against suggestions that a plea deal struck by Donald Trump's former lawyer Michael Cohen implicated the president.
Cohen on Tuesday pleaded guilty to eight criminal charges of tax evasion, bank fraud and campaign finance violations, telling a court President Trump had directed him to arrange payments ahead of the 2016 presidential election to silence two women with whom they claim he had affairs.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders repeatedly said "he did nothing wrong" and that there were no charges against the president.
At the same time, Trump praised former campaign chairman Paul Manafort on Twitter, after he too was convicted with multiple counts of Fraud.
Residents are bracing for a powerful hurricane as it bears down on the Hawaiian islands.
The US Central Pacific Hurricane Centre has downgraded Hurricane Lane to a Category 4, but is expected to pack 250 km/h winds and dump as much as 50cm of rain over parts of the islands, triggering major flash flooding and landslides. A hurricane warning is in effect for all Hawaii County and Maui Country.
Back in Australia, and police are investigating after several shots were fired into four homes on the same Sydney street. Three neighbouring homes, another home and a parked vehicle were hit in the attack on Katinka Street in Bonnyrigg about 8.30pm on Tuesday. All the residents were at home, but none were injured.
Police were only informed of the incident almost a day later and believe one of the homes was the main target.
A second man has been charged with murder over the death of a Lake Macquarie father whose body was found by a roadside with horrific burns.
A taxi driver found Wade Still, 23, heavily blistered but still alive in grass beside a road at Whitebridge in Newcastle on Monday, but he died on the way to hospital.
A 49-year-man was arrested on Wednesday at Bennetts Green and charged with murder. He will appear in court on Thursday.
It follows the arrest and court appearance of a 35-year-old man who was known to Sill and is accused of setting him alight.
A Rolling Stones fan has found a rare recording of a duet between Mick Jagger and Carly Simon recorded more than 45 years ago. The fan hasn’t revealed how he came across the ballad called ‘Fragile’, and sent a copy of the tape to Rolling Stone Magazine.
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With Reuters / AAP.