Author(s): Stephen Mills
Stephen Mills has conducted on-the-record interviews with every living national campaign director of the two major political parties. Their experience covers the 15 federal election campaigns from 1974 to the present day. Built around twelve critical moments in Australian electoral history, The Professionalstraces the transformation of the party official from administrative servant to highly influential, professional campaign manager, and the election campaign from the pre-television days to the contemporary world of social media, focus groups and million-dollar budgets. He shows how Australia's political parties went from mass-membership organisations - which provided opportunities for grassroots participation - to top-down managerial enterprises. Internal control of the parties has shifted to a new centre of power- the Head Office. The Professionalsprovides a fascinating new perspective on the contours of Australian political history and shows political parties as they have rarely been seen before - from the inside. 'The inside story of our political parties- how the dark arts shape electoral outcomes.' Lindsay Tanner'A very revealing insight into the backrooms of Australian politics' Michelle Grattan
Stephen Mills is the author of the pioneering study The New Machine Men. He also wrote The Hawke Years.