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Politics with Michelle Grattan

ABC (Australia)

Michelle Grattan, Chief Political Correspondent at The Conversation, talks politics with politicians and experts, from Capital Hill.

Michelle Grattan, Chief Political Correspondent at The Conversation, talks politics with politicians and experts, from Capital Hill.


Sydney, NSW


Michelle Grattan, Chief Political Correspondent at The Conversation, talks politics with politicians and experts, from Capital Hill.






Radio National Sydney, 2001 Australia


Treasurer Josh Frydenberg on saving Australia’s tourism and construction industries

As Australia slowly emerges from isolation, the nation’s economy is reopening, and even looking rather better than expected. But Australia still faces grim months ahead as unemployment numbers grow and the true extent of business survival rates emerge. Treasurer Josh Frydenberg described the economic data as sobering when he recently gave an update to parliament. In this podcast, Frydenberg says there would be greater reason for optimism, especially for the tourism sector, if states were...


Jim Chalmers on JobKeeper’s flaws and the Eden-Monaro byelection

Labor will campaign on the flaws in the JobKeeper program in the Eden-Monaro byelection, shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers says. “There will be so many people from Eden-Monaro who would have heard the Prime Minister say that there would be wage subsidies only to find out that they’ve either been deliberately or accidentally excluded from those wage subsidies, who can’t understand why someone who might have been on $100 a week before is now getting $750 while they’re excluded from it.” Chalmers...


Democracy 2025 - The role of the APS in a post COVID-19 world with Michelle Grattan, Mark Evans, Peter Shergold, and Renée Leon

In the latest Democratic Fundamentals, Renée Leon, former Secretary of the Commonwealth Department of Human Services, and Peter Shergold, former Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, discuss the challenges and opportunities for the APS as the world eases restrictions with hosts Mark Evans and Michelle Grattan. Democratic Fundamentals is produced in partnership with Democracy 2025, The Conversation and contentgroup.


Paul Kelly on the risk of a COVID-19 second-wave

Speaking as an expert in epidemiology, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Paul Kelly is candid about the prospects of a second-wave of coronavirus in a society that hasn't developed herd immunity. "There is a very large risk of a second wave. We need to do this very carefully," he says, as Australia starts to roll back restrictions. "We are potentially victims of our own success here because we have been so successful in minimising the first wave of infections, the vast majority of Australians...


Politics with Michelle Grattan: Nev Power on the role of business in a post-coronavirus world

Nev Power, former head of "Twiggy" Forrest's Fortescue Metals Group, is now the Chairman of the government's National COVID-19 Coordination Commission. The commission, set up by Scott Morrison in March, is working on mitigating the effects of the virus on jobs and businesses, and exploring opportunities to help get the country moving again in the post-virus future. This week the national cabinet was briefed on its preparations for the COVID-safe workplaces. It is also looking towards the...


Katy Gallagher on the senate's coronavirus watchdog

Labor's Katy Gallagher is chair of the Senate committee that will assess the government's handling of the coronavirus crisis, both its economic and health challenges. It is set for the deep dive, having a final reporting date of mid-2022. With parliament currently sitting only in fits and starts, Gallagher considers the committee a "key accountability vehicle". "We don't want political grandstanding, we don't want long winded political arguments, there are other forums for those," she...


Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull on his autobiography, ‘A Bigger Picture

In this episode of Politics with Michelle Grattan, former prime minister Malcolm Turnbull gives his frank assessment of Scott Morrison as a former colleague and as prime minister, warns about the right of the Liberal party, and tongue lashes News Corp. As Treasurer, Morrison at times infuriated then PM Turnbull by leaking to the media and “frontrunning” positions before decision were made. “Morrison and I worked together very productively” but “he had an approach to frontrunning policy...


MPs Tim Watts, Fiona Martin, Clare O'Neil and Helen Haines discuss serving their electorates during the coronavirus crisis

Michelle Grattan talks with MPs Tim Watts (Gellibrand, Victoria), Fiona Martin (Reid, NSW), Clare O'Neil (Hotham, Victoria) and Helen Haines (Indi, Victoria) about how they do their job during the pandemic. They discuss the operation of their electorate offices in light of isolation requirements, and recount how the crisis is affecting their constituents.


Democracy 2025 - How does Australia compare: what makes a leading democracy? With Michelle Grattan, Mark Evans and Ian Chubb

In this special hour long podcast presented by Mark Evans, professor of governance and director of Democracy 2025, the panel discusses Australian democracy with Emeritus Professor Ian Chubb and Michelle Grattan. The panel dissects the Australian trust in government, compared with other modern democracies around the world. Drawing on the world values survey, the report (available ) notes the sharp focus on the quality of democratic governance, especially in the time of global crisis caused...


Nobel Laureate Professor Peter Doherty on the coronavirus crisis and the timeline for a vaccine

The coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, which causes the disease COVID-19, has infected nearly half a million people and taken the lives of more than 21,200. No person in Australia is more qualified to speak on the science of this global pandemic than Professor Peter Doherty. Professor Doherty was awarded the Nobel prize for medicine in 1996 for his work studying the immune system. The Doherty Institute, now at the forefront of Australian research on the coronavirus, bears his name. In this episode of...


Chief Medical Officer Brendan Murphy on COVID-19

With 100 domestic cases as of March 10, federal and state governments and health authorities face daunting challenges posed by COVID-19 in coming weeks and months - securing a workforce of nurses and doctors to treat the sick, ensuring enough testing facilities to meet a rapidly growing demand, and stemming the spread of the virus, to the maximum extent possible. As Chief Medical Officer for the federal government, Professor Brendan Murphy is confident about maintaining enough health staff,...


Keith Pitt on the Murray-Darling Basin, the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility, and Nuclear Power

Appointed minister for resources, water, and northern Australia in the Nationals reshuffle, Keith Pitt was handed a diverse portfolio with some highly contested issues. As water minister, he'll soon have a report from Mick Keelty on the Murray-Darling Basin, which could spark more fighting between states, and the ACCC report into water trading, expected at the end of the year. "We do need to ensure the trading is fair," he says. "I'm as concerned as anybody else if people are playing the...


Mark Butler on Labor’s 2050 carbon neutral target

Mark Butler, Shadow Minister for Climate Change and Energy, is optimistic that Labor is better placed to prosecute its climate policy at the next election, compared to the last. “I think we are better positioned now for two reasons.” “Firstly, I think the business community has shifted substantially over the last couple of years, and that’s a global shift that reflects, particularly the fact that regulators…and investors have recognised that climate change poses a very serious risk to the...


Phil Honeywood on the coronavirus challenge for universities

The coronavirus is presenting a major threat to Australia’s education export industry, which is highly dependant upon the China market, and a huge challenge to the universities. Phillip Honeywood, CEO of the International Education Association of Australia says: “At the end of the day, China is the most heavily populated country in the world, it’s on our regional doorstep and it has an incredible appetite for having their children study offshore.”


Adam Bandt on Greens' hopes for future power sharing

Adam Bandt began his political journey in the Labor party, but the issue of climate change drew him to the Greens. Last week he became their leader, elected unopposed. Asked about his ambitions for the party, Bandt aspires to a power-sharing situation with a Labor government, akin to the Gillard era. "Ultimately Labor's got to decide where it stands, and if Labor decides that it does want to go down the path of working with us on a plan to phase out coal and look after workers in...


Michael McCormack moves on from his near-death experience

Starting the year with a leadership spill will be seen by many, especially those hit by the bushfires, as the Nationals being particularly self-indulgent. Nationals leader and Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack admits as much, but notes he wasn’t the initiator of his party’s bad behaviour. “We should not have been talking about ourselves. This was never of my making or doing. And we should have spent the entire day, not just those sitting hours, but the entire day reflecting on just...


Mathias Cormann and Jim Chalmers on the mid-year budget update

The mid-year budget update has seen the government downgrading its forecast for Australia’s economic growth in 2019-20 by 0.25%, and slashing the projected surplus by A$2.1 billion, to $5 billion. The forecast for wage growth has also been reduced, and unemployment is projected to be slightly higher than was envisaged at budget time. The figures indicate a worsening economy, but the government has sought to put a positive spin on the situation, saying the Australian economy is showing...


Andrew Hastie on foreign influence, security and veteran mental health

Chinese government influence and interference has been a contentious issue in Australia politics in the past year. Weighing up concerns about foreign money in state and federal campaigns, candidates’ direct relationships with arms of the Chinese Communist Party and the defection of a Chinese spy operating within Australia, against the fragile trade relationship we have with our largest export market has been one of the more difficult topics for both major parties. Andrew Hastie, Liberal...


Minister David Littleproud on bushfires, drought, and the Nationals

Bushfires continue to burn across NSW and Queensland, the death toll has risen, and the damage to properties, wildlife and the environment is devastating. With conditions predicted to worsen over the summer, climate change has inevitably come into the frame. The Prime Minister and Opposition leader have said policy arguments should be avoided until the immediate crisis has passed, but many - including former emergency chiefs and some victims - disagree. And Greens and Nationals have had...


Ross Gittins on the government’s ‘surplus obsession’

The Australian economy is growing slowly, with people not opening their purses and businesses uncertain about the future. The Reserve Bank has cut interest rates three times this year - the official cash rate is currently at a historic low of 0.75%. Many are arguing monetary policy has run its course, and fiscal stimulus is needed. This week’s Essential poll shows voters tend to think so as well, with 56% agreeing that stimulating the economy should be prioritised over getting back to...