Tim Lester is Online Political Editor. He has spent nearly 30 years as a journalist, most of it working in television news for the ABC and Nine Network, covering southeast Asia, Washington, national security and national politics. He joined Fairfax in early 2010 as chief of its Canberra bureau.
Tim Lester Nielsen Pollster John Stirton discusses why Labor's latest poll numbers haven't budged despite the Prime Minister's progress towards a disability insurance scheme.
Tim Lester The strong dollar and low terms of trade will no doubt keep business profits and tax revenues down for some time to come, explains Finance minister Penny Wong.
Tim Lester Defence expert and former government advisor Paul Dibb says the 2013 Defence White Paper has the right regional approach, but says an increase in defence spending should come sooner rather than later.
2013 Defence White Paper
Tim Lester The Opposition has quickly ended talk of bipartisan support for the white paper with an attack on the government's defence spending plans.
Tim Lester Fiery Senator Barnaby Joyce attacks the Greens and government for seeking a deal on disability insurance before revealing the scheme's detail and full costs.
Tim Lester The PM announces a Medicare-style levy for the NDIS, but the opposition remains wary. Rob Oakeshott calls for action as disability advocates applaud the move.
Tim Lester Australia's carbon tax is putting business at a competitive disadvantage, and company tax cuts should be on the next federal government's agenda says Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief...
Tim Lester Changes to the GST rate or base are not on the cards, says shadow assistant treasurer Mathias Cormann, despite Labor having exposed the Federal budget to "increased structural risks".
Tim Lester Assistant treasurer David Bradbury says Labor will not make changes to the GST rate or base to balance the budget, but says that the opposition leader and Liberal premiers need to come clean on their...
Tim Lester Tasmanian MP Geoff Lyons defends the current GST formula, says Tony Abbott is telling Western Australians one thing and Tasmanians another when it comes to changes to Commonwealth funding...
Tim Lester Economist Neville Norman backs changes to the GST as the only good way to avoid budgets in the red for years to come.
Tim Lester Despite the resources boom, Australia is not living within its means says leading think tank. Repairing the budgets means making tough decisions and accepting the burden must be shared.
Tim Lester On the eve of a crucial meeting between the PM and State premiers, a leading academic institution declares the Gonski Report is based on flawed assumptions.
Tim Lester EU failure to boost carbon trading is further proof the Australian government's carbon tax should be scrapped, says Opposition spokesperson Greg Hunt.
Tim Lester One Nation co-founder David Ettridge says he will accept an apology from opposition leader Tony Abbott provided it comes with $1.5 million attached.
Tim Lester Pauline Hanson on the issues that matter for her federal election tilt, maybe for the Hunter (NSW). Incumbent Joel Fitzgibbon responds, One Nation Party co-founder David Etteridge gives support.
Tim Lester Liberal MP Joshua Frydenberg says asylum seeker screening process by ASIO should be reviewed by federal court judge. Labor MP Joel Fitzgibbon strongly disagrees.
Tim Lester How will the Boston terror attack impact on Australian security concerns? Terrorism expert Prof. Clive Williams says while mass sporting events such as the City to Surf are vulnerable, there are...
Tim Lester Former MP Pauline Hanson will contest the upcoming federal election, but has not yet decided on the NSW seat of Hunter or an undetermined seat in Queensland.
Tim Lester As Woodside pulls its James Price Point project, the opposition worries industrial action and the high Aussie dollar mean Australia has "priced itself out of the market" for onshore LNG development.