The even stronger focus on Iraq and Syria and the official announcement that Australia would be joining a coalition supporting US military operations against Islamic State led to Prime Minister Tony Abbott completely dominating political media coverage this week. Opposition Leader Bill Shorten was the only other politician with more than a fifth of the coverage of Tony Abbott. The all-encompassing role the PM has taken as the public face of the battle against IS was shown by Defence Minister David Johnston just scraping into the Top 20 and Foreign Minister Julie Bishop dropping six places as well.

While the opposition has been in lockstep with the government on all issues relating to Iraq and Syria,  Greens Leader Christine Milne jumped into a rare appearance in the top ten, as her party strenuously questions any Australian military involvement in the region. PUP Leader Clive Palmer (who admitted last week that he didn’t really want to be in Parliament) has kept relatively quiet on foreign affairs and defence issues.

Football finals and local crime stories dominated most other media coverage, but there was still room for NSW Premier Mike Baird to move up the list as yet more revelations about improper funding of Liberal campaigns flowed through ICAC, while Agriculture Minister Barnaby Joyce — whose media coverage these days is very vanilla compared to the tutti frutti times of last decade — moved up the list with his trip to China to advance Free Trade Agreement negotiations.

Crikey Political Index: September 11-17

It was a quiet political week on talkback, shown by Victorian Opposition Leader Daniel Andrews’ position at third, mainly owing to his party’s decision to abandon the East-West Link if elected in November.

Talkback Top Five

Unlike talkback, the news media foreign affairs dominance flowed through to social media, with Christine Milne making a rare appearance in the top five, although still with only one-tenth as many mentions as Tony Abbott.

Social Media Top Five

Younger and more fabulous folk tell me that Kimye is the accepted shorthand for the celebrity superpower couple of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West, who graced us with their presence this week. Exciting.

Comparison of media mentions




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Peter Fray
Peter Fray
Editor-in-chief of Crikey
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