Tom Switzer

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Tom Switzer (born 1971 in Dallas, Texas, USA[1]) is editor of The Spectator Australia, succeeding Oscar Humphries in December 2009,[2] and editor of American Review. He is also a research associate at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney where he teaches American politics and history.[3] He was a candidate to replace former Australian Liberal leader Brendan Nelson in his northern Sydney electoral seat of Bradfield.[4]


Early life and education[edit]

Switzer was raised in Sydney's Northern Beaches and attended St Aloysius' College, Milsons Point, where he was an Australian schools track and field champion in 1989,[1] won medals in several national and state athletics championships and was trained by Australian Olympic coach Jackie Byrnes. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in History (First Class Honours) in 1994;[1] and a Masters in International Relations in 1994; both from the University of Sydney.[3]


Before politics, he was an assistant editor at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC (1995 – 1998), an editorial writer at the Australian Financial Review (1998 – 2001) and opinion editor for The Australian (2001 – 2008) where he attracted controversy for hiring conservative columnist Janet Albrechtsen[5] and writing conservative polemics on the public broadcaster, the US alliance,[6] the Iraq war[7] and the culture wars.[8] In recent years, Switzer has also been a regular commentator for Sky News television, The Spectator Australia,[9] The Wall Street Journal[10] and Quadrant magazine.

In 2008 he was senior adviser to former federal Liberal Party Leader Brendan Nelson until the leadership vote that saw Malcolm Turnbull take over in the top job.[11] During his time in the Opposition Leader's office, he provoked controversy for his role in toughening up policy on an emissions trading scheme.[12]

Switzer's analysis of events during the 2013 Labor Party leadership change was picked up by the international press, attracting the attention of The Wall Street Journal, in an opinion editorial titled Defenstration Down Under.


  1. ^ a b c "Tom Switzer". Q&A. Australia: ABC TV. 2008. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  2. ^ "Tom Switzer's articles at The Spectator Australia -
  3. ^ a b "Tom Switzer". People. The United States Studies Centre. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  4. ^ Salusinszky, Imre (18 February 2009). "Howard devotees at top of list for Brendan Nelson's seat". The Australian. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  5. ^ Sheehan, Paul (26 February 2005). "Lightning rod for conservatism will make the sparks fly". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  6. ^ Harries, Owen; Switzer, Tom (4 October 2007). "US alliance will change". The Australian. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  7. ^ Switzer, Tom (24 April 2004). "Iraqi debacle : At least the illusions are gone". The New York Times (United States). Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  8. ^ Harries, Owen; Switzer, Tom (3 October 2006). "Owen Harries and Tom Switzer: Little magazine leaves big mark". The Australian. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  9. ^ Tom Switzer (15 April 2009). "In praise of our leading lady". Spectator Australia. 
  10. ^ Switzer, Tom (8 May 2009). "Bring Back the Thatcher Revolution". The Wall Street Journal Asia. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  11. ^ Shanahan, Dennis (30 July 2008). "Brendan Nelson's vision lost in carbon fog". The Australian. Retrieved 2 June 2012. 
  12. ^ Tom Switzer (15 October 2008). "How we found ourselves ambushed by reality". The Spectator.