The federal government is in a tough spot but Australian workers must understand the dangers of switching to an Abbott-led government, a federal minister says.
"We know that times are tough in the Labor party and the government at the moment," Mr Combet told delegates.
"I don't need to tell you about the polls and some of the challenges we've got. You see it yourselves.
"But when confronted with tough times, the tough get going. We've got to get going across the Labor movement."
Mr Combet said a Coalition government posed a threat to working Australians, and would resurrect a Work Choices-style industrial landscape.
He said Opposition Leader Tony Abbott was attempting to dupe voters into thinking he'd changed.
"He may have softened his voice and tamed down some of his aggressive behaviour, trying to present that he's a really sensitive guy," Mr Combet said.
"But it's all rubbish. This guy is a hard, tough, aggressive, vicious, negative politician.
"He is in the harder elements of the Liberal Party."