Paul John Kelly (born 11 October 1947) is an Australian political journalist and historian from Sydney. He has worked in a variety of roles, principally for The Australian newspaper, and is currently its Editor-at-large. He has written several books on political events since the 1970s including on the Australian constitutional crisis of 1975. His latest book, The March of Patriots, chronicles the creation of a modern Australia during the 1991–2007 era of Prime Ministers, Paul Keating and John Howard. Kelly is a political commentator on radio and television and presented the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) TV documentary series, 100 Years – The Australian Story (2001) and wrote a book of the same title.
In 2006, Kelly's work was described by fellow Australian journalists, Toby Creswell and Samantha Trenoweth, "[It] is distinguished for his broad and deep grasp of the inter-relationship of economics and political shifts, and his ability to place Australian domestic developments into an international and historical context".
Paul John Kelly was born on 11 October 1947 in Sydney, New South Wales. He is the son of Joseph Kelly and Sybil (nee Mackenzie). He completed a Bachelor of Arts and Diploma of Education at the University of Sydney in 1969. He worked in the Prime Minister's Department in Canberra from 1969 to 1971 before changing to journalism. He is a Doctor of Letters from the University of Melbourne.
He joined the Canberra press gallery in 1971 and became chief political correspondent for The Australian from 1974 to 1975. From 1976 to 1978 he was chief political correspondent for the now-defunct Fairfax newspaper The National Times, then its deputy editor from 1978 to 1979. He became chief political correspondent for The Sydney Morning Herald from 1981 to 1984. He returned to The Australian and was its national affairs editor from 1985 to 1991, editor-in-chief from 1991 to 1996 and editor-at-large since 1996 to present.
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