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The Conversation's politics podcast
Michelle Grattan, Chief Political Correspondent at The Conversation, talks politics with politicians and experts.

Latest Episodes

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Peter Malinauskas on political donations, kids on social media, and the nuclear option

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Peter Malinauskas on political donations, kids on social media, and the nuclear option

After beating a first-term South Australian Liberal government in 2022, Labor premier Peter Malinauskas has gone on to be a reform advocate on issues including social media and politcal donations. His government is looking at a ban on children under 14 accessing social media accounts, with parental consent required for those 14 and 15. Malinauskas is also proposing changes that would ban most political…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Bill Shorten's around-the-world trip to discuss peace in Ukraine and NDIS reform

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Bill Shorten’s around-the-world trip to discuss peace in Ukraine and NDIS reform

Bill Shorten, the minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), is currently in New York at a United Nations conference on the rights of people with disabilities. At the weekend, he'll fly to Europe to represent Australia at a summit in Switzerland aimed at finding international consensus on a peace path for the Ukrainian conflict. In this podcast, Shorten discusses these conferences…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Clive Hamilton on how Australians must adapt to 'Living Hot'

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Clive Hamilton on how Australians must adapt to ‘Living Hot’

The debate over climate change mostly focuses on how to best to limit emissions in the effort to prevent disastrous global warming. However in a new book, Living Hot, Clive Hamilton and George Wilkenfeld challenge current priorities, arguing rising temperatures can't be contained fast enough and we need to turn our attention to "adaptation". Clive Hamilton, who is Professor of Public Ethics at Charles…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Andrew Norton on the Albanese government's interventionist policy to cut foreign student numbers

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Andrew Norton on the Albanese government’s interventionist policy to cut foreign student numbers

Migration has become a major battleground between the government and opposition. While they have different policies, each side is targeting foreign students in their plans for cuts in the intake. The government will apply caps, decided by the minister, on the numbers of foreign students for particular universities, with some concessions for those institutions investing in new student accommodation…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Andrew Bragg flags a coalition would use 'coercion' of the states to get more new houses built

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Andrew Bragg flags a coalition would use ‘coercion’ of the states to get more new houses built

Housing remains one of Australia's most pressing issues in both state and federal politics. The RBA keeping rates up and high mortgage repayments have left many Australians struggling. For those Australians who don't own a home, it's becoming increasingly hard to get into the housing market. The opposition has blamed the high levels of migration for why Australians feel so much housing pain. Peter…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Madeleine King on investment incentives and the pivotal role of gas

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Madeleine King on investment incentives and the pivotal role of gas

The energy debate has ramped up, with government and opposition trading blows over their respective plans to secure Australia's energy future. The budget announced big tax incentives for green energy projects. Earlier the government embraced the importance of gas up to 2050 and beyond. The Coalition is still promising its yet-to-be-announced nuclear policy, but that took a hit from a sceptical CSIRO…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Budget fight looms on Future Made in Australia tax breaks

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Budget fight looms on Future Made in Australia tax breaks

Treasurer Jim Chalmers on Tuesday handed down his third budget. It had a second successive surplus and sweeteners, including relief on energy bills, and tax breaks for development of green hydrogen and critical minerals processing. The opposition will back the energy bill subsidy but oppose the tax breaks in the Future Made in Australia policy. In this podcast we were joined by Angus Taylor, who is…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: James Paterson on prospects for passage of the government's deportation bill

Politics with Michelle Grattan: James Paterson on prospects for passage of the government’s deportation bill

Next week the government will again next try to get its legislation through to deal with non-citizens who won't cooperate with efforts to deport them. The bill, which the opposition and crossbench refused to rush through in the last parliamentary sitting, went to a Senate inquiry that reported this week. In dissenting comments, the Coalition urged a number of amendments. On Friday the High Court brings…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Anne Summers says we need much more information on male perpetrators of violence against women

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Anne Summers says we need much more information on male perpetrators of violence against women

The Prime Minister and state and territory leaders met on Wednesday as the national cabinet to discuss a crisis gripping Australia – the horrific number of women murdered this year. The killings have shocked the nation and led to mass demonstrations across the country last weekend. In this podcast, we're joined by Dr Anne Summers, a longtime writer and advocate on women's issues. Half a century ago…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Economist Chris Richardson on an 'ugly' inflation result and the coming budget

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Economist Chris Richardson on an ‘ugly’ inflation result and the coming budget

With Jim Chalmers's third budget on May 14, Australians will be looking for some more cost-of-living relief – beyond the tax cuts – although they have been warned extra measures will be modest. As this week's consumer price index showed, the battle with inflation has not yet been won. The government can't afford to have an over-generous budget add to inflation and further delay a pre-election reduction…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Independent MP Dai Le on the church attack in her electorate

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Independent MP Dai Le on the church attack in her electorate

After the stabbing of Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel in an Assyrian Orthodox Church in Wakeley on Monday, and the killings in Bondi Junction shopping centre just two days earlier, many people in Sydney and in Australia more widely are tense. The shopping centre incident, in which the perpetrator was a mentally-ill 40-year-old man, was not seen by the police as terrorism; the church attack, by a 16-year-old…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Josh Burns on being a Jewish MP during a terrible conflict

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Josh Burns on being a Jewish MP during a terrible conflict

The death of Australian Zomi Frankcom and other World Central Kitchen aid workers in Gaza in an Israeli strike has led to yet more intense and critical scrutiny over how Israel is prosecuting the war against Hamas. This week Foreign Minister Penny Wong has floated the possibility of recognition of a Palestinian state ahead of a two-state solution. Her comments were condemned by Peter Dutton as "irreparably…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Andrew Leigh on competition - economic and political

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Andrew Leigh on competition - economic and political

The Albanese government and the Australian public are currently focused on the cost-of-living crisis and its impact on household budgets. For Australia's longer-term economic outlook, the government is looking at reforms that are needed to increase competition and our flat-lined productivity. Andrew Leigh is in the middle of this debate. He's Assistant Minister for Employment and Assistant Minister…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Kim Beazley on Kevin Rudd, being an ambassador, and a possible second Trump presidency

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Kim Beazley on Kevin Rudd, being an ambassador, and a possible second Trump presidency

Kim Beazley, a former Labor leader, served as Australia's ambassador in Washington between 2010 and 2016. He is widely respected for his expertise in foreign and defence policy. In this podcast episode, Beazley discusses the brouhaha over Donald Trump's denigrating comments about Kevin Rudd, the present Australian ambassador in Washington. We also canvass wider alliance issues and the recent visit…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Cyber expert Lesley Seebeck on TikTok's future in Australia

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Cyber expert Lesley Seebeck on TikTok’s future in Australia

The United States House of Representatives has passed a bill to force TikTok's owner, ByteDance, to either sell TikTok to a non-Chinese company or face a ban in the US. While the measure won't come into effect until the American Senate agrees, it has re-engaged a debate over TikTok's risk to national security, as well as its impact on young people and the implications for free speech if there was a…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Masculinity expert Michael Flood on boys and men behaving badly

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Masculinity expert Michael Flood on boys and men behaving badly

Last week, the ABC's Four Corners investigated the alleged toxic culture towards women at Sydney's elite boys Cranbrook School. The investigation covered harassment and bullying of female staff and other bad behaviour. After further developments, the headmaster, Nicholas Sampson, had resigned by week's end. The scandal has brought back a debate about whether single-sex schools are fit for purpose and…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: John Blaxland on spies, AUKUS, and an unsettled Washington

Politics with Michelle Grattan: John Blaxland on spies, AUKUS, and an unsettled Washington

Last week, ASIO boss Mike Burgess gave his annual assessment of threats to Australia's domestic security. In his speech, Burgess sensationally revealed that a former politician had "sold out their country" to a foreign regime. Burgess's refusal to name the person, citing the need to protect ASIO's tradecraft, invited speculation and debate. Nor would he specify the country, but a subsequent report…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Jason Clare on the future of education in Australia

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Jason Clare on the future of education in Australia

The government has released its Universities Accord report, produced by a committee chaired by Mary O'Kane, a former vice-chancellor at the University of Adelaide. The recommendations will be considered by the Minister for Education, Jason Clare and the government over the coming months, although Clare has given a few hints about what his response might be on certain issues. One proposal Clare clearly…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Antony Green, Kos Samaras and Tim Costello on Dunkley contest

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Antony Green, Kos Samaras and Tim Costello on Dunkley contest

The March 2 byelection in the outer suburban Melbourne seat of Dunkley is the third byelection this term but the first in a Labor-held electorate. It has been caused by the death late last year of Peta Murphy, after a long battle with cancer. Labor's margin sits at 6.3% in Dunkley, an electorate that has swung between the major parties. Labor goes into the byelection as the favourite, as it seeks to…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Assistant minister Malarndirri McCarthy says there's 'no rush' on treaty and truth-telling

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Assistant minister Malarndirri McCarthy says there’s ‘no rush’ on treaty and truth-telling

The federal government has released its latest implementation plan for Closing the Gap on Indigenous disadvantage. What are multiple gaps are still vast, with many areas not on track to meet their targets. After the failed Voice referendum, the government is looking to the next steps for First Nations people. To discuss this week's policy announcement, the centrepiece of which is a $700 million jobs…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Chris Bowen on fuel efficiency standards and the energy transition

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Chris Bowen on fuel efficiency standards and the energy transition

The government has announced long-awaited fuel efficiency standards, which will place a yearly cap on the total emissions output for new cars sold in Australia. The new regime will move Australia in the direction of comparable countries, but it has its critics. Minister for Climate Change and Energy Chris Bowen joins the podcast to discuss this policy, as well as the government's progress on the energy…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Angus Taylor on tax and the economy

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Angus Taylor on tax and the economy

With the government's changes to the stage 3 tax cuts to favour lower and middle income earners, and a looming by-election in the Victorian seat of Dunkley, eyes are now on the opposition for its response to Labor's new package. In our first podcast of 2024, Shadow Treasurer Angus Taylor discusses the tax broken promise, where the economy is heading, falling inflation, and more. On the government's…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Jim Chalmers says Australians will be better off next year

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Jim Chalmers says Australians will be better off next year

It's been a difficult year for the economy, and the year ahead also is looking challenging. Treasurer Jim Chalmers, overseer of the government's economic policy, joins us on the podcast to talk about the latest budget numbers, interest rates, changes to the Reserve Bank board, Australia's debt, cost of living measures and more. On 2024, Chalmers expects Australians to be better off this time next year…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Bill Shorten on making the NDIS fit for purpose

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Bill Shorten on making the NDIS fit for purpose

Bill Shorten, Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme and Government Services, has released the review of the NDIS, which recommends sweeping changes to the scheme. The reforms to come will see the states take up much of the responsibility for providing services for people with more minor issues, especially children with developmental delays. Shorten joined the podcast to talk about the…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Chris Bowen's struggle to promote consensus on climate action at COP28

Chris Bowen, Minister for Climate Change and Energy, next week heads to COP28 in Dubai, leading the Australian delegation. He joins the podcast to talk about the meeting, which he hopes will be easier than last year's. Well, I want to see a big step forward. Now, at the last COP we were just flat out, and it was a bit of a surprise to all of us, frankly, flat out, me and like-minded ministers, just…

1 Host: Michelle Grattan