Jacinda’s awkward moment with Lisa
JACINDA Ardern might be one of the most popular prime ministers of all time, but that hasn't stopped Lisa Wilkinson from asking the New Zealand PM the difficult questions.
On last night's Sunday Project, Wilkinson wasted no time grilling the New Zealand PM, declaring she'll "probably get criticised" for doing so.
After discussing how New Zealand is doing four months after the terrorism attack in Christchurch, Wilkinson tackled Ms Ardern's recent criticism of Australia's policy to deport New Zealand criminals.
The usually poised Ms Ardern appeared to squirm awkwardly and looked visibly uncomfortable as Wilkinson boldly quizzed her in front of the camera.
"You've described Scott Morrison's stance on deportations as 'corrosive'," Wilkinson started.
Ms Ardern interjected: "Oh look I think we should be fair the, the deportation policy has existed for a while and …"
Perhaps sensing her hesitation, Wilkinson helpfully chipped in, branding Australia's Prime Minister Scott Morrison "the architect" of the policy Ms Ardern described as "wrong" and "unjust" on Friday, following a meeting with the Australian PM.
"That is, that is correct," Ms Ardern said. "When you are friends as we are, you can speak frankly with each other you know."
"I think it speaks to the strength of it that we do speak so openly," Ms Ardern added.
The interview was filmed shortly after the meeting with ScoMo, in which the leaders discussed "frankly" the implications NZ citizens living in Australia have faced since it tightened back in 2014.
After the pair's face-to-face - their first since the Coalition won the May election - Ms Ardern said New Zealand wasn't going to let go its concerns after more than 1,500 Kiwi criminals have been deported since the rules changed.
"If something's wrong and if something is not fair and is unjust, you don't let it go," she told NZ media after the meeting with Mr Morrison, the ABC reported.
"I totally accept that it is within Australia's rights to deport those who engage in criminal activity in Australia. But there are some examples that will not make any sense to any fair-minded person."
Later in the interview, Wilkinson probed Ms Ardern on motherhood, anticipating her line of questioning might not be popular with some viewers.
"Now I'm probably gonna get criticised for asking you this, you are a strong, successful, working women but I think people are genuinely interested. How are you going with motherhood?" she said.
After awkwardly squirming her way through her stance on Australia's "corrosive" deportation laws, Ms Ardern seemed happy to move onto a lighter topic.
Declaring she "doesn't mind" talking about what life has been like since becoming a mum to daughter Neve with fiance Clarke Gayford, she went on to shower him with praise for being the one-year-old's "primary caregiver".
"No one needs to see anyone pretending it's easy because its not and so I'm not going to go around pretending I do everything," she said, shrugging off claims she "this Wonder Woman". "I'm not, its hard and women who are both working and raising children deserve to have help and support and so we shouldn't pretend it can be done alone."
As Wilkinson predicted, some viewers were quick to question her decision to ask Ms Ardern about her life as a mum.
Surely it is possible to interview a female politician without asking about how parenthood is going? You don't ask male pollies. #TheProjectTV— Bunyip58 (@bunyiptweeter) July 21, 2019
Ms Ardern also went on reveal some details about her daughter, stating she's "very strong willed" - saying the personality trait was a mix of both her mum and dad.
In a post on her Instagram account before the show aired, Wilkinson revealed Ms Ardern had "never told anyone" those details about Neve before.
View this post on Instagram
Well, that’s one off the bucket list. Selfie with NZ PM, the inspiring @jacindaardern right after our interview for tonight’s Sunday @theprojecttv And she couldn’t have been more charming, down-to-earth or candid. We talk everything from why she spoke out against President Trump this week, her stance on Australia’s “corrosive” deportation laws, the moments that stay with her from the devastating Christchurch attacks, to the realities of first-time motherhood while running a country (with the eyes of the world upon her), the strong personality traits Neve is already showing...and the VERY unique way Clarke proposed...as her media person said to me afterwards, “she’s never told anyone that stuff before.” And as Oprah says, “We should all channel our inner Jacinda”. Hope you can watch, tonight, 6.30pm on @channel10au 😊 #jacindaardern #newzealand #nz
Ms Ardern also opened up about her recent engagement to Clarke, joking she had no idea it was coming.
"If I did, I wouldn't have been wearing sweats," she laughed.
The pair got engaged over Easter during a hike, with Ms Ardern revealing Clarke presented her a diamond ring inside an Easter egg.
Viewers were loving the interview, taking to Twitter to praise Ms Ardern for being "normal".
#TheProjectTV. God I love this woman. What a wonderful amazing genuine human being. I could add so many more adjectives.— Michael B (ACTOR) (@michaelbremer1) July 21, 2019
The Sunday Project airs Sunday at 6.30pm on Channel 10.