Chronicle

The Two Conservatisms

It’s going to be messy, Malcolm Turnbull’s need to square the circle of his ruthlessly plotted ascent to the Liberal leadership with the revulsion now animating so many of his party’s supporters. Be that as it may, there remains a role — a key role — for Tony Abbott

When Malcolm Turnbull gave his first thoughts on being elected Liberal leader, he sounded like a smoothly confident CEO picking up the reins of an established corporation after a hostile takeover. CEOs on these occasions talk about changing the corporate culture or melding the cultures of the two companies in order to give the defeated executives a brief hope of inclusion. Mr Turnbull used slightly different language. He promised a new “style” of governing that would be more consultative and consensual. Mutatis mutandis, however, the purpose was the same. He talked up “style” to avoid discussing changes in policy that…

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