Mike Hosking says he doesn't want PM Jacinda Ardern back on radio show after interview

  • 07/04/2021

Broadcaster Mike Hosking says he doesn't want the Prime Minister back on his show after a tense interview about the trans-Tasman bubble. 

On Wednesday, the Newstalk ZB breakfast host interviewed Jacinda Ardern in a rare interview since she cancelled her weekly slot. 

The interview covered numerous topics including seasonal workers, managed isolation and quarantine spaces, and the vaccination rollout. 

After the interview, Hosking revealed he doesn't want the Prime Minister to return to his show, 

"We're involved in this, this discussion at the moment. I don't want her [Ardern] back on the programme is what it boils down to," he said. 

Hosking said if the Prime Minister isn't willing to do a regular slot, she shouldn't be able to only appear on the show when there is good news. 

"Here's my argument, if she didn't want to appear on this programme that's fine, that's her issue, that's her prerogative and she can own that. But she doesn't get to come back. She doesn't get to pop up every now and then when the good news comes out in the form of a bubble.

"Now to be fair to her, we did ask and that's the production side of this programme, they asked her to come on and she said she would.

"I don't want her back. She's made her call and she can live with it. The management and production side argued she should come back on a periodic basis based on the fact that when there is a big deal, a big headline, big news, that we get her back on. 

The broadcaster said Ardern doesn't want to be on the show and "doesn't add anything" when she is. 

"Did she answer the questions to your satisfaction? Did we raise some reasonable salient points? Did we demand some accountability and not get any yet again?"

"So the overarching question I would ask is are we not better on this programme, you and I collectively, not having her on the show? She didn't want to be here, she doesn't add anything when she is here so who is the winner and who is the loser?" 

The Prime Minister cancelled her weekly interview with Hosking earlier in the year. At the time, the Prime Minister's office said the change came after a review of her schedule. 

"The Prime Minister's schedule of media appearances has been reviewed and while it hasn't reduced overall, it has changed.

"The Prime Minister will no longer do a weekly slot specifically on the ZB morning show.

"However she, and all her ministers, will continue to appear on the show as and when issues arise."

In March, Ardern said the decision to drop the interview was based on her desire to branch out more. 

"People get their news from multiple sources, and when I look around at whether or not I'm trying to reach people where they are, I think I could do a better job, and so that factored into some of my thinking." 

The weekly slot has been observed by New Zealand Prime Ministers for more than 30 years.