Only time will tell who has won the clash between the Coalition and the ALP on asylum seekers and national security this week.
While Labor seems ahead on points given the Government was defeated in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, Scott Morrison isn't coming across as either bloody or bowed.
He maintains, rightly or wrongly, the government has gained more than it has lost.
The basis for this argument, now being widely disseminated by conservative commentators is the claim that less than four months out from the election Labor has gone soft on national security.
"What has happened... was proof positive that Bill Shorten and Labor do not have the mettle... to do what is necessary to ensure Australia's border protection framework can be managed by Labor," Morrison said. "There's no bipartisanship on this issue. Every arrival is on Bill Shorten and Labor's head."
Morrison may be right in playing down the significance of the defeat on the floor of the House of Representatives given the volatility that has been a feature of Australian politics for the past decade.
This was not a vote of no confidence. It was a vote on a question of conscience.
The bill's strongest supporters, Kerryn Phelps, the Greens and a posse of cross benchers, have come away with significantly less than they had originally sought.
The legislation underwent significant amendments which Derryn Hinch, for one, said he was surprised to learn had been agreed to by the Greens.
As a result the changes only apply to the detainees already on Manus and Nauru.
What Phelps originally proposed would have established a principle of justice and equity that applied to current and future asylum seekers. Wednesday's bill fell short of that.
It remains to be seen if the members of the public who backed Phelps and her supporters in their bid to ensure fair play will agree half a loaf is better than none, or if they will be disappointed.
If, as we were told, this was about justice for asylum seekers it is far from a complete victory.
If it was about giving the Government a bloody nose then the ALP, the Greens and the cross benchers have come out in front. That is unless a a boat appears on the horizon between now and polling day.
Morrison's claim that if no boats appear it is because of the his government's efforts and if they do it is all Labor's fault is fatuous in the extreme.
The people smugglers have not resumed operations despite the fact hundreds of people have been transferred to Australia from Manus and Nauru since 2014.
If anything is likely to get the asylum seekers back in business it must surely be the Coalition's hysterical claims that a change of government will mean a change of policy.
If that were to happen then Morrison, Dutton and Michaelia Cash would have a lot to answer for.