Chris Johnson

Chris Johnson

Chris Johnson is Canberra bureau chief. Most recently Chris was the National Political Correspondent for The Sunday Age and The Sun-Herald

Gillard safe in her job for now: backbenchers

Chris Johnson Labor MPs are feeling electorally vulnerable but there is no firm plan to topple Prime Minister Julia Gillard.

Prosecutor to examine Slipper case material

Chris Johnson Australian Federal Police have referred possible case material against Speaker Peter Slipper to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions for examination.

PM brushes aside fresh talk of leadership spill

By Chris Johnson Prime Minister Julia Gillard is refusing to buy into a renewed surge in leadership speculation, sparked by chief government whip Joel Fitzgibbon, who suggested continued bad polling might see a...

Abbott's 'sham' is exposed, PM says

Chris Johnson Opposition Leader Tony Abbott stars in a pantomime scripted to say no to all action against people smugglers, according to Prime Minister Julia Gillard, who insists the Coalition's asylum seeker...

Chris Johnson

AFP hits roadblock on checks

By Chris Johnson Australian Federal Police are struggling to cope with a backlog of national police check applications, forcing applicants to wait weeks for clearances and callers to be left hanging on the phone for...

Food firm distances itself from tax letter

Chris Johnson The parent company of one of Australia's largest bakery chains has been forced to distance itself from a management missive urging franchisees to blame price rises on the carbon tax.

Gillard agrees to fast track kids' freedom

Chris Johnson Indonesia has vowed to work more closely with Australia to fight people smuggling rackets, but it wants its detained underage nationals who were caught working on asylum seeker boats to be released...

People smuggling top priority at Aust-Indon talks

Chris Johnson What to do about people smuggling is the highest priority for talks between Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.

Abbott to reject advice of panel

Chris Johnson Opposition Leader Tony Abbott insists he doesn't need a panel of experts to tell him what asylum seeker policy he should adopt.

Gillard SOS over asylum bill stalemate

Chris Johnson The man who exposed the lie behind the Howard government's children overboard affair has been charged with doing what federal politicians have refused to do - find a solution to the asylum seeker...

Asylum seeker bill 'doomed'

A picture released by the Australian Maritime and Safety Authority (AMSA) shows a boat which according to the AMSA was taken mid-morning before the boat sank near Christmas Island.

Chris Johnson The federal opposition is poised to scuttle the passage of asylum seeker legislation through the Senate today despite warnings from Prime Minister Julia Gillard that to do so would be a ''denial of...

Claims of plot against Slipper

Question Time in the House of Representatives.  Liberal back bencher  Peter Slipper.

Chris Johnson Federal Court documents allege a former adviser to Speaker Peter Slipper colluded with a News Ltd reporter in an attempt boost his own career and provide advantage to Mr Slipper's political rivals.

Parties enter campaign mode as tax approaches

Chris Johnson Labor and the Coalition have each kicked into a pseudo campaign mode as the carbon tax approaches as asylum seeker boats keep heading to Australia.

PM willing to give ground on refugee plan

Chris Johnson Prime Minister Julia Gillard wants to end the political stalemate over asylum seekers, suggesting she is prepared to make further changes to her border protection policies to do so.

Doors opened in Israel for Labor minister 'going places'

Chris Johnson Cabinet minister Bill Shorten secured an audience with Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in Jerusalem because the Israelis were convinced he could one day be Australia's leader.

Libs, Nats set for bitter battle over Hume

Fiona Nash will be running for the seat of Hume, for the Nationals.

Chris Johnson Nationals senator Fiona Nash looks set to upset the Liberals' plans for the federal electorate of Hume by sticking her hand up for the Lower House seat.

No trip to Rio while Burke stays grounded

Chris Johnson The Coalition has denied Environment Minister Tony Burke the opportunity to talk up his marine parks expansion plans on the world stage, refusing a pair for him to be absent from Parliament until...

MPs back as Slipper issue still simmers

Chris Johnson Parliament returns to Canberra today for the last sitting fortnight before the long winter break, but Julia Gillard will be a notable absentee this week.

Slipper court case centres on Brough

Chris Johnson A campaign to reignite the political ambitions of former Howard government minister Mal Brough is at the centre of the case against Speaker Peter Slipper, according to suggestions made in the Federal...

PM wants business to talk up our strengths

Chris Johnson Prime Minister Julia Gillard has called on business leaders to talk up Australia's economy in order to grasp opportunities from global financial uncertainty.