By Daniel Lang - Managing Director
In reality, the dust had barely even settled on Dr. Kerryn Phelps' stunning win in the Wentworth by-election when treasurer Josh Frydenberg confirmed the result would not prompt any sort of re-think or shift in the Morrison government's approach to climate change.
And therein lies the single biggest problem facing the modern day Liberal National coalition, they simply will not take the time to reflect or use setbacks or defeat as the catalyst for meaningful change in an attempt to draw back into the mainstream fold.
Like it or not, there's almost no chance whatsoever that climate change isn't real and that it isn't, at least in some part, driven negatively by human action or inaction and while large swathes of the voting bloc in Wentworth and around the country count climate change as a key factor in their decision making at the ballot, the Libs can't accede for fear of upsetting a small but ghastly vocal bunch.
The hard-right conservative base which keeps guys like Tony Abbott, Peter Dutton, Kevin Andrews and a raft of increasingly unstable characters in parliament and they draw strength from the even louder, somehow more obtuse and obnoxious 'MAGA mob' on the other side of the planet.
Why would a right-wing party leader, even one far more centric than a Donald Trump figure, feel the need to back away from a hard-line, anti-climate stance when he's empowered by the loudest voices in the echo chamber?
That Frydenberg was formerly the minister for energy and the environment should do little to curtail the growing fear that he's happy to dispatch the very real threat of climate change for what the government deems as a real vote winner, the average household power bill.
While ever the LNP government sees the chance to dangle the unenforceable promise of a few dollars off the average electricity bill out for the voters in a desperate attempt to sway some favour back their way, we cannot expect and will not receive any meaningful action on climate change.
It will be all too easy for the likes of Frydenberg to dismiss the voter backlash in the Wentworth by-election given the seat is about as far from the average Australian household as it gets, but dismissing the sting of a huge swing is exactly the sort of approach which has dug the hole in which the party finds itself.
Not being able to sit back and take aboard the lessons dealt to them by the electorate in sporadic by-elections is currently hurting the Liberals, but it will it take a catastrophic wipe out at the next federal election to force significant systemic change within the party?
Only time will tell.