David Marr Interview

13 Oct, 2015 by

David Marr Interview

It’s been an interesting few years for politics in Australia – leaders have come and gone much quicker than the elections that usually mark their fate, and for much of that time, the tenor of debate has been a distraction – the viciousness of the language obscuring the relatively minor policy differences that often lay behind the battles, particularly within the Labor party.

From his time as one of the ‘faceless men’ who brought down Kevin Rudd, to his current role of Opposition Leader – Bill Shorten’s brief time in Federal politics has been marked by a quiet involvement in that party’s key moments.

But while backroom competence and an undisputed skill wrangling the factions may have been enough to overcome Tony Abbott, it seems unlikely to do the job against Malcolm Turnbull. And so, for the left, the question becomes: can Bill Shorten rise to the occasion?

David Marr’s new Quarterly EssayFaction Man, details the rise of Shorten, from schoolboy union recruiter, to head of the AWU to Opposition Leader.

David spoke to Sky Kirkham about what drives Shorten to seek the ultimate height and ponders whether the man who would be Prime Minister has what it takes to get there. Originally broadcast 08/10/2015. Faction Man is out as a Quarterly Essay.

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