on air now

Michael O’Brien admits he probably didn’t need that pay rise, but…

Victoria’s Opposition Leader has conceded he was surprised by the size of the pay rise coming his way.

But he’s stopped short of calling on the government to take action to stop it.

Daniel Andrews will become the highest paid Premier in Australia, with his salary to bump up to $441,439 a year.

It’s a whopping pay increase of 11.8 per cent — the same increase enjoyed by the Deputy Leader, the Leader of the Opposition, and Members of Cabinet.

Liberal leader Michael O’Brien said the decision is “out of the hands of politicians” and “there’s no good time for any politician to get a pay rise”.

But he also conceded it seemed particularly generous.

“I think for backbenchers it’s probably fair; I think it puts them about middle of the pack in terms of other states,” he told Neil Mitchell in a wide-ranging interview.

“I’m still trying to get my head around why the Premier and Ministers and me have got such a big uplift.

“I haven’t read the decision thoroughly yet. I’d like to understand.”

Neil Mitchell: I’d like to understand how we can afford it when we can only afford to pay the ambos and police an increase of two per cent.


Meanwhile, Mr O’Brien also opened up about the Coalition’s crushing defeat in the 2018 state election.

He admitted the party ran a poor campaign, and made a scathing assessment of the TV advertisements.

“I think the TV ads were some of the worst I’ve seen from a political campaign,” he said.

Click PLAY to hear the full interview