Fastest entrance of the event last night was awarded to Malcolm Turnbull, who sprinted into The Australian’s
50th birthday anniversary dinner so quickly he blurred my photo. Malcolm, our cleverest politician, knows that public displays of affection to Rupert Murdoch have a way of coming back to haunt you -- who could possibly forget the photo of Tony Blair among the Murdoch godparents? And David Cameron palling it up with Andy Coulson? It’s one thing to be bathing in the gaze of the Sun King at election time (he really likes me!) and another to have your personal text messages to Rebekah Brooks -- "LOL!" -- read out in a court of law.
Fascinated by the gala dinner at the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney last night, Crikey
attended (uninvited) and milled around outside in the rain. Although Malcolm arrived in the same car as Julie Bishop, he rather unchivalrously left her in the dust, although she could have been hampered by towering heels and a really fabulous red lace sheath. A later photo of the two of them on the red carpet shows them standing about four feet apart. Joe Hockey also made a fast entrance, several minutes after NSW Premier Mike Baird, who snuck into the slipstream of another couple.
But the question on everyone's lips was where was Ken Cowley? According to the gossip in the room, the former head honcho of News had been invited despite giving a rather indiscreet interview about The Australian
and Lachlan Murdoch to the Australian Financial Review
just a few weeks ago. Apparently he had accepted and then changed his mind -- there was no sight of him on the red carpet.
Jeanne Pratt didn't carry her own brolly (left) while Julie Bishop (right) made do with staffer Murray Hansen as Malcolm Turnbull had already bolted inside. Pics by Liam Mendes