Malcolm Turnbull blames the media for ‘distracting people’ from the real issues

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull got his heckles up when he appeared on the ABC’s 7.30 program on November 14, saying

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull got his heckles up when he appeared on the ABC’s 7.30 program on November 14, saying that the ABC and ‘elite media’ is to blame for distracting people from the real issues.

Host Leigh Sales grilled the PM about the Government’s push to amend section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act.

While the prime minister agreed it wasn’t an issue at the forefront of everyone’s thoughts, he said it raises “important issues relating to free speech” and highlighted that the bigger issues “is the one I spent eight weeks of the election campaign talking about, which is the economy, it is about jobs and growth”.

When Sales continued with her line of questioning Turnbull sought to pull her up.

“Leigh, this is a question you should address to your editors at the ABC — very seriously. 18C is talking about constantly on the ABC, talked about constantly in what’s often the elite media. I have focused overwhelmingly on the economy,” Turnbull said.

He offered some ‘constructive criticism’ to the ABC, saying that it had joined the ranks of “elite media” and played a part in “distracting people from the Government’s focus on economic growth”.

“Overwhelmingly I focus on the big issues of concern to Australians and they are economic concerns, and they are issues of national security,” the prime minister said.

When Sales questioned him about recent poor polling, Turnbull shot back that perhaps people “might focus less on the polls and less on the opinions of commentators” and focus more on “what people are actually saying”, highlighting just how many political commentators and media outlets got it wrong with the result of the United States presidential election recently.

How important do you think the role of the media is in shaping opinions on issues of importance? What do you think about what Malcolm Turnbull had to say?

  1. Mary  

    I wholeheartedly agree with Mr Turnbull. I think many people, including me, are tired of the media focusing on negatives. The wsy the commentators are relentless with their questioning is frustrating for the person being interviewed as well as listener.
    Yes they are important in helping shape issues of importance but please ABC can you be more balanced, less combative and more intelligent.

  2. pete harper  

    Completely agree with Mary.
    And the disrespect shown by some of these self styled
    media commentators,shows a complete lack of manners.
    The superior arrogant pigs.

  3. colin  

    cant believe TurnBULL is still dragging out the slogans… jobs and growth. yet does nothing about it, It suits them when the polls are not good for Labor but the moment the polls reflect badly on Lieberals then they are irrelevant. and I think the media needs to be more aggressive with these politicians who think they are the answer to prayers. prayers from the big end of town certainly not the pensioners

  4. patricia dick  

    Easy to pass the blame to others when you fail at just about everything you do. Mr Turnbull and his fellow politicians do not live in the same world most of us do. Has he any idea? Life is tough Mr Turnbull, and fancy slogans don’t make it any easier. This is leaving the door wide open for others to succeed. Surely they are aware of that?

  5. rikda  

    People weren’t told the half of what was going on in the American election.
    It was a movie script of corruption & electoral fraud that backfired.
    Clintons DNC was a cesspool.
    People were surprised at Trumps success. It came about because their was a conscience in the Electoral college.
    Those were the people at the face of the DNC that had the country at heart & they would rather have Trump than an enclave of corruption in power, & Turnbull knew it. They all did.
    Talking about the ABC. Compared to Fox CNN etc they are saints.

  6. Guy Flavell  

    I only wish Messrs Turnbull and Fifield had the intestinal fortitude to actually put the ABC on notice re their future funding.
    Scott’s and now Guthrie’s regimes have most definitely resulted in THE most flagrant and disgusting left-wing biases.
    The obvious lack of balance in their news and current affairs programming is an abject embarrassment to quality journalism
    in this country, ie: Q&A, Lateline, The Drum, Insiders and the 7.30 Report being the worst offenders.

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