By MAMAMIA TEAM
When you’re the Prime Minister of Australia, everyone wants a piece of you, a piece of your time.
Every day, the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) fields dozens of requests from journalists and media organisations, who want to interview the Prime Minister.
Add in all the requests from cabinet ministers, backbenchers, party heavyweights, public servants, stakeholders, businesses, interest groups and unions and those dozens of daily calls to PMO asking for a chunk of the PM’s time quickly turns into hundreds. A day.
Everyone wants a piece of you, everyone wants your ear, everyone wants to get close. The decision making process about who gets time for what – while ultimately controlled by the Prime Minister herself – is something that Julia Gillard receives endless advice about.
When it comes to accepting media requests, these are carefully considered, deliberately planned, strategic moves. No media interview is an accident for the Prime Minister. And Gillard’s chief adviser on these matters, the man who advises which TV show to appear on, which radio show to call in to and which newspaper to chat with, is Communications Director John McTernan.
This week, the Prime Minister (and through her, Mr McTernan) copped criticism from the News Limited press over accepting an in-studio interview with popular Sydney radio show Kyle and Jackie O.
And it’s not the first time. The PM is a regular on the show – which is the #1 breakfast show in Sydney. They landed the first and only interview she did after the most recent spill when Kevin Rudd decided not to put up his hand and effectively imploded his tilt at the leadership.