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Tony Abbott a ‘terrific’ bloke, victim of double standards, says Greg Sheridan

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Tony Abbott is a ‘terrific bloke’ who is the victim of double standards, says a man who went to university with the Prime Minister.

Debate continues to rage about how the Abbott government is travelling, two years since it was elected into office.

Greg Sheridan, Foreign Editor of The Australian newspaper, said political mismanagement and poor communication were two major reasons the government was struggling in the polls.

But he said much of the criticism levelled at the Prime Minister was often unfair and unwarranted.

‘There is a tremendous double standard applied to Abbott,’ he told Neil Mitchell on 3AW Mornings.

‘The Left in this country go bananas if he says anything.’

Mr Sherdian admits he initially thought the PM was destined to be popular with the public at the time of his election.

‘I thought he would be the conservative’s Bob Hawke,’ he said.

‘He’s an academically brilliant man, a Rhodes Scholar, he was dux ? or very near to it ? at Riverview and so on.

‘I used to copy some of his economics essays at university; I know how clever he was.’

He said for whatever reason, Australians hadn’t been given the chance to get to know the ‘real’ Prime Minister.

‘I think Abbott would be much better off doing a few one-hour long, 30-minute long, TV interviews going into who he is and so on,’ Mr Sheridan said.

‘He’s actually a terrific bloke.’

LISTEN: Greg Sheridan gives an insight into Tony Abbott