My prediction is that Howard will go before the election.
My prediction is that he will call the election this week.
The first problem our beloved leader faces is that if APEC was to be seen to be the bolster he needed to swing the electorate then it didn't work. While it is being hailed as a success, the trouble is that the sort of 'success' that it represents is not the success that the voter understands or is emotionally concerned about.
There is nothing for us that makes the world a safer place.
There is nothing that will improve immediately the quality of of the environment.
There is the perception that the rich got what they wanted, and that we collude with that because we want to be rich.
Now, I am not convinced that these perceptions are accurate, but perceptions don't have to be.
And that is the second problem for Mr Howard.
The wall cast around APEC is perceived by the electorate to be what Howard's style of government is like.
We are to be kept out of it, told what is good for us and shut up and accept it.
And the electorate doesn't like that!
Bo, we don't like that at all.
The third problem, and perhaps the most serious one for him. Now the question has been asked he is gone. And someone has dared to suggest that he should resign.
The wall around the Coalition has been breached. And he has said that he is leader at the will of his party. That is (and I'll do the voice) "I will remain as leader as long as my party wants me".
Yesterday he said "I intend to lead my party to the next election"...now those two statements don't necessarily marry. If it is not the will of the party, then on his own terms he has to go.
I'm not saying he'll go without a fight.
I'm not saying he won't try to persuade the party that he is the best man for the job.
I'm not saying he doesn't really think Costello will pull it off.
....any way I told you my conclusion at the beginning!