Greg Sheridan gets in really, really early with his prediction that if the Liberals can get their act together, and treat Tony Abbott as their Socrates-meets-Tony Montana for the next three or four years, they could break the always-a-two-term rule of Australian governments and unseat Rudd at the next election :
...the Liberals might have an outside chance in three years' time. But they will need to remain credible: more than that, to have a sense of life about them, a sense of vigour and purpose.
And who will the Liberals have to rely on for all this life, vigour and purpose? Tony Abbott, of course. Who else is there? Alexander Downer? Brendan Nelson?
Sensing the Liberals are, after the weekend's presumed election defeat, going to lose Abbott to a opposition bench free lifestyle, Sheridan all but begs Tony Abbott not to follow the advice of friend Glenn Milne and "go home to his wife" :
Abbott has been central to conservative politics for the past 15 years. He needs to be central to it for the next 15 years. Even in opposition the Liberals will need to try to shape the debate, defend their record, defend their heroes and defend their ideas...you can't win a battle without warriors.
Even if the only viable 'warrior' you've got left is Tony "Too Honest" Abbott.