Sean Nicholls

Sean Nicholls

Sean Nicholls is the State Political Editor of The Sydney Morning Herald.

Barry O'Farrell's fall sweeps the nation

Sean Nicholls, Michaela Whitbourn and Kate McClymont Fallout from the shock resignation of NSW premier Barry O'Farrell has reverberated across the country.

Premier never matched great expectations

Fairfax Media writer

Sean Nicholls It didn't take long for the brick bats to start flying Barry O'Farrell's way. Within hours of his resignation, one Liberal source declared his decision was unsurprising because "he was never prepared...

Comments 66

ICAC told Campbell Newman meeting came with $5000 price tag

Campbell Newman

Michaela Whitbourn, Kate McClymont, Sean Nicholls, Tony Moore The price of a meeting between Queensland Premier Campbell Newman and the head of a company linked to the Obeid family was a $5000 donation to Mr Newman's re-election fund as Brisbane lord mayor, a...

Barrister warns Barry O'Farrell of Holocaust denial risk under George Brandis' changes

Sean Nicholls Changes to the Racial Discrimination Act proposed by federal Attorney-General George Brandis would ''open the door to Holocaust deniers'', allowing them to publish their claims with impunity, legal...

Poor memory does not figure for finance whiz

Senator Arthur Sinodinos

Sean Nicholls Arthur Sinodinos has enjoyed a reputation as a whip-smart details politician, which is why his appointment as Assistant Treasurer made sense.

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Arthur Sinodinos' memory lets him down about donations to NSW Liberals

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Sean Nicholls Arthur Sinodinos insists he has ''no recollection'' of more than $70,000 in donations to the NSW Liberals by his former firm Australian Water Holdings - despite being honorary party treasurer and an...

I agree with Barry O'Farrell, says George Brandis

Brandis

James Massola, Sean Nicholls Attorney-General George Brandis says cabinet made a collective decision to only release an exposure draft of proposed changes to race hate laws, but has not denied that he was forced by his...

George Brandis' race change draws ire from state Liberals

Attorney-General Senator George Brandis

James Massola, Sean Nicholls, Henrietta Cook Attorney-General George Brandis says cabinet made a collective decision to release only an exposure draft of proposed changes to race hate laws, but he has not denied he was forced by cabinet...

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Criticism of ICAC after fall of Arthur Sinodinos is wide of the mark

Fairfax Media writer

Sean Nicholls The downfall of Arthur Sinodinos as assistant treasurer - pending assessment of his behaviour by the Independent Commission Against Corruption - has prompted some harsh criticism of the high-profile...

George Brandis says cabinet made 'collective decision' to release exposure draft on changes to race hate laws

Attorney-General George Brandis has been forced to change his original proposal to loosen constraints on racist insults and hate speech.

James Massola, Sean Nicholls Attorney-General George Brandis says cabinet made a collective decision to release an exposure draft on changes to race hate laws, but has not denied that he was forced by colleagues to water down...

Racism 'always wrong': Barry O'Farrell takes aim at George Brandis over 'right to be bigoted'

Premier Barry O'Farrell

Sean Nicholls Premier Barry O'Farrell has criticised comments by federal Attorney-General George Brandis that people have the right to be bigoted, declaring that vilification on the grounds of race or religion is...

Liberal fund-raiser linked to Hockey pays back $22,000

Joe Hockey

Mark Kenny, Sean Nicholls Twenty-two thousand dollars worth of funds paid to a Liberal Party fundraising group for Treasurer Joe Hockey's electorate, from the Obeid-linked Australian Water Holdings company since 2009, have...

Why Arthur Sinodinos should stand aside

Senator Arthur Sinodinos

Sean Nicholls Most of the commentary about Arthur Sinodinos and his involvement in the Independent Commission Against Corruption's latest inquiry has been more than willing to cut the affable senator from NSW...

Big stance kills talk of any vested interest

Fairfax Media writer

Sean Nicholls If there is one word to sum up the reaction to Barry O'Farrell's plan to tackle alcohol-related violence, it must be ''shocked''.

Premier pledges to take action on alcohol-fuelled violence

Premier Barry O?Farrell.

Sean Nicholls, Michaela Whitbourn Pubs and clubs in Sydney's most popular entertainment districts will be hit with a 3am alcohol curfew - and harsh mandatory sentences for drunken attacks will be introduced within weeks under radical...

Premier Barry O'Farrell faces moral dilemma after High Court throws fund-raising into chaos

Sean Nicholls The High Court's decision just before Christmas to strike down key elements of the O'Farrell government's laws on who can donate to political parties in NSW took most people by surprise - not least...

Chris Hartcher's resignation leaves party reputation badly bruised

Fairfax Media writer

Sean Nicholls Chris Hartcher says he is confident he will be cleared of wrongdoing after revealing he was the subject of a search warrant executed by corruption investigators.

Nick Lalich's $16,000 gambling study tour's run of bad luck

Nick Lalich.

Sean Nicholls The proliferation of licensed clubs and poker machines in his Cabramatta electorate apparently meant it made sense for state MP Nick Lalich to jet off on a ''study tour'' to learn how US casinos...

Howard, Ruddock to oversee preselections

Phillip Ruddock

Sean Nicholls Liberal Party elders, including John Howard and Philip Ruddock, will be approached to form an eminent persons committee to sort out the controversial issue of preselections in state and federal...

O'Farrell throws weight behind ICAC

Barry O'Farrell

Sean Nicholls Ministers who breach the code of conduct will be answerable to the Independent Commission Against Corruption for the first time after Premier Barry O'Farrell announced support for the regulator's...