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Joh for PM: The inside story of an extraordinary political drama

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Unfolding like a political thriller, Joh for PM reveals for the first time the details of the campaign that rocked Australian politics. In 1987 the Queensland Premier, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, launched an audacious bid to break the federal Opposition Coalition, replace Ian Sinclair as National Party leader, and become Prime Minister himself. Trench warfare waged between the Sin Unfolding like a political thriller, Joh for PM reveals for the first time the details of the campaign that rocked Australian politics. In 1987 the Queensland Premier, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, launched an audacious bid to break the federal Opposition Coalition, replace Ian Sinclair as National Party leader, and become Prime Minister himself. Trench warfare waged between the Sinclair and Joh forces during one of the most bizarre and divisive periods in Australian politics. In Joh for PM National Party insider Paul Davey reveals what went on behind closed doors in top-level internal meetings and the strategies aimed at thwarting the Joh campaign and reuniting the party at state and federal levels.


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Unfolding like a political thriller, Joh for PM reveals for the first time the details of the campaign that rocked Australian politics. In 1987 the Queensland Premier, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, launched an audacious bid to break the federal Opposition Coalition, replace Ian Sinclair as National Party leader, and become Prime Minister himself. Trench warfare waged between the Sin Unfolding like a political thriller, Joh for PM reveals for the first time the details of the campaign that rocked Australian politics. In 1987 the Queensland Premier, Joh Bjelke-Petersen, launched an audacious bid to break the federal Opposition Coalition, replace Ian Sinclair as National Party leader, and become Prime Minister himself. Trench warfare waged between the Sinclair and Joh forces during one of the most bizarre and divisive periods in Australian politics. In Joh for PM National Party insider Paul Davey reveals what went on behind closed doors in top-level internal meetings and the strategies aimed at thwarting the Joh campaign and reuniting the party at state and federal levels.

22 review for Joh for PM: The inside story of an extraordinary political drama

  1. 4 out of 5

    Matt Dawson

    3.5 stars. The story of Joh Bjelke-Petersen's run at federal politics is one of the most interesting freakshows in Australian political history. Those fascinated by Clive Palmer and PUP's bizarre rise and subsequent fall will find the story of Joh's brief fling with Canberra even more interesting. He didn't get as far, but he sure as hell created a lot more damage - the Coalition temporarily breaking up and his own 20-year reign as premier of Queensland two of the biggest casualties. One of the p 3.5 stars. The story of Joh Bjelke-Petersen's run at federal politics is one of the most interesting freakshows in Australian political history. Those fascinated by Clive Palmer and PUP's bizarre rise and subsequent fall will find the story of Joh's brief fling with Canberra even more interesting. He didn't get as far, but he sure as hell created a lot more damage - the Coalition temporarily breaking up and his own 20-year reign as premier of Queensland two of the biggest casualties. One of the problems of the book is that it is not personal enough to be a straight up 'insider account'. When Davey does talk about his own role in the National Party at times the prose comes to life, in a way it often doesn't when discussing events he wasn't involved in. The book also fails largely to capture the colour and controversy around Bjelke-Petersen. It covers the events in a erudite and accurate way, but misses the life of the events, which is a great shame. Another disappointment is that he doesn't go into the tremendous corruption and destruction caused by Petersen, but given Davey's connection to the National Party I guess this is to be expected. That being said, I would highly recommend this book to those interested in Australian politics. We have our fair share of odd stories and this is definitely one of the best.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Matt John

    An insight into the "Joh for PM" campaign and the ultimate downfall of Sir Joh as the Premier of Queensland and leader of the Queensland Country Party - and more general National Party workings at the time. Although written by National Party insider, Paul Davey the book reads as a third-eye view. Would be of interest to anyone with a fascination of Australian politics, although for a fuller understanding would need to be read alongside other titles documenting the mid to late eighties. An easy re An insight into the "Joh for PM" campaign and the ultimate downfall of Sir Joh as the Premier of Queensland and leader of the Queensland Country Party - and more general National Party workings at the time. Although written by National Party insider, Paul Davey the book reads as a third-eye view. Would be of interest to anyone with a fascination of Australian politics, although for a fuller understanding would need to be read alongside other titles documenting the mid to late eighties. An easy read, promising further insights into those queer folk "north of the border".

  3. 5 out of 5

    Brendan

    Joh for PM is a remarkable insider's account of the tumult caused by Joh Bjelke Peterson's attempt to become Prime Minister. It provides an important account of an event whose significance is slowly being forgotten. The events of the 1987 election ensured that Hawke-Keating years would continue for almost another decade whilst Howard underwent a transformative experience whilst relegated to the backbench in the aftermath of the election loss, allowing him to become the leader who convincely won Joh for PM is a remarkable insider's account of the tumult caused by Joh Bjelke Peterson's attempt to become Prime Minister. It provides an important account of an event whose significance is slowly being forgotten. The events of the 1987 election ensured that Hawke-Keating years would continue for almost another decade whilst Howard underwent a transformative experience whilst relegated to the backbench in the aftermath of the election loss, allowing him to become the leader who convincely won the 1996 election A must read for anyone interested in the history of the National Party, the Coalition or the history behind Australian politics in general.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Brendan Waite

    An interesting look at the Queensland Nats at a time when the parliamentary party was divorced from the organisational wing and from the branches. Something that the Newman years indicate has yet to be rectified.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Murray

    Okay, but dealt largely with internal National Party politics, which was only so interesting.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Liz Barr

  7. 5 out of 5

    Todd Winther

  8. 5 out of 5

    Michael Whiteway

  9. 5 out of 5

    Garret

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bill Dawson

  11. 5 out of 5

    Gordana

  12. 4 out of 5

    ZoBlitz

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nick

  14. 5 out of 5

    Justine Sanders

  15. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

  16. 5 out of 5

    Michael

  17. 4 out of 5

    Adrian O'rourke

  18. 5 out of 5

    Wayne Sheldon

  19. 4 out of 5

    Reza Amiri Praramadhan

  20. 5 out of 5

    Jackie Ryan

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jack

  22. 4 out of 5

    Courtney

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