The prime minister on Tuesday offered a scathing assessment of the opposition leader's "temperament", including whether he's capable of dealing with complex diplomatic issues.
Mr Rudd took up the theme again on Wednesday, describing Mr Abbott as "aggressive".
He justified the personal attack by saying the Australian people have a right to know "what they're buying". "With me, they do, warts and all," Mr Rudd told reporters in Brisbane…Mr Abbott later brushed off the comments.
"I'm not going to get into a competitive character assassination with Mr Rudd," he told reporters in Tasmania. "I'll leave Mr Rudd to engage in that kind of personal attack."I would simply suggest if you want to know my character, ask my colleagues. If you want to know Mr Rudd's character, ask his colleagues."