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Presence of a capable future leader hints at a possible revival for an exhausted party

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Scott Morrison’s personal energy could not conceal the fact that he is leading a government and a party showing every symptom of exhaustion.

His skills as a spruiker could not overcome the fact that he lacks a program to spruik.

His lovely family could not disguise the fact that the Liberal family was missing all its former prime ministers.

Nor could his celebration of the women in his life compensate for the absence of women in his leadership team.

Altogether, it was a Liberal campaign launch that made the most of a poor lot, including a strained fundraising capacity.

Former prime ministers were absent because at least two of them are unsettling reminders of bitter civil war.

The party’s only real parliamentary rock star, Julie Bishop, was absent for the same reason that its fastest-rising female talent, Kelly O'Dwyer, was missing, both retiring with a sense of........

© The Age