Former Liberal Minister Christopher Pyne attracted critics for his political front. But he always had plenty of friends and networks, enabling him often to be a player, if not always a “fixer”.
After his election to the South Australian seat of Sturt at age 25, he went on to hold senior portfolios, notably education and defence, and to stride the parliamentary stage as Leader of the House of Representatives.
In his memoir, The Insider, the former politician provides his take, humorous and candid, on a tumultuous 26 parliamentary years.
In this podcast, Pyne talks about life after politics, and stories from the ‘Canberra bubble’.
“I don’t miss politics at all – because I left happy, and I wanted to go.
“So I’m not one of these politicians that was dragged kicking and screaming. I left when people wanted me to stay, which is a great rarity.”
Pyne is ultra candid about his ambition to be prime minister:
“I think when you’re 15, and you decided you want to be a member of the House of Representatives, you kind of think ‘I’m going to dream big.’ So of course I dreamt to be prime minister”.
Reality, it appears, didn’t hit for quite a while.
“I think that week when Malcolm [Turnbull] was deposed and nobody was suggesting that I should be running for leader, it dawned on me that the generation that was being elected, which was Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg, were a generation different to me.”