Gough to Tony, in Michelle Grattan’s view

Michelle Grattan

Michelle Grattan

THE doyen of Australian political journalism Michelle Grattan has had a ringside seat in Canberra for decades.

And on Saturday she will share insights on events during and since the Whitlam era with Border political junkies.

Grattan will talk with The Border Mail editor Di Thomas at The Cube and take questions.

A landmark event for Grattan in her early years in the press gallery was the sacking of the Whitlam government in 1975.

While she said the sacking had been “dramatic”, recent years had also been fascinating.

“It has been very interesting with the hung Parliament,” she said.

“Now we see a new government battling early unpopularity and a difficult upper house.”

The election of Cathy McGowan last year piqued Grattan’s interest.

“It was an extraordinary situation,” she said.

“We’ve seen independents win elsewhere but Indi was very unusual.

“People would have expected the Liberal Party to hold that seat easily.”

Grattan said the surprise win was the result of a ground swell of support for Ms McGowan and incumbent Sophie Mirabella’s failure to “cultivate” the seat.

Ms Thomas said Saturday’s event was a fascinating chance to hear Grattan, who had keenly observed Canberra for more than four decades.

“There is no doubt Michelle will have insights into how today’s politics have emerged the way they have,” she said.

“It will be great for those interested in politics, current affairs, history and how the media works.”

The event, hosted by Albury Wodonga YWCA, starts at 4pm.

Tickets are available on (02) 6022 9311 or at thecubewodonga.com.au/tickets.