Jacinda Ardern interview on 60 Minutes slammed as 'bloody painful' by Australians

An Australian reporter has been blasted on social media for a piece on Jacinda Ardern that screened on Australia's 60 Minutes on Sunday night.

During the 13-minute report, Charles Wooley said he'd met many Prime Ministers, but "none so young, not too many so smart, and never one so attractive".

Much of the report was focused on Ms Ardern's pregnancy. Mr Wooley told Ms Ardern and 'first bloke' Clarke Gayford it was "interesting how much people have been counting back to the conception".

Ms Ardern screwed her face up and laughed it off, and Mr Gayford leaned in and asked, "Really?"

"The election was done. It was over," Ms Ardern told him. "Not that we need to get into those details."

The reaction on social media from Australian viewers was overwhelmingly negative.

"Why did 60 Minutes send its creepiest interviewer to do its segment on Jacinda Ardern? Eww!" wrote Twitter user @LordeEmms.

"Charles Wooley is bloody painful. Was interested in the Jacinda Ardern interview on 60 Minutes but he made it cringeworthy," said @RugbyReg.

"Did you have to be so fkg retrograde & ask about the conception, pregnancy, his 'first hubby' role etc so much?!" wrote @netski66.

"Some of these questions on #60mins to the NZ Prime Minister are so repugnant," said @gigglingben.

Channel 9/60 Minutes Australia Jacinda ARdern
Jacinda Ardern reacts to a question about the conception process. Photo credit: Channel 9/60 Minutes Australia

The comments on her looks and the date she conceived overshadowed the rest of the piece, which looked at 'Jacindamania', Ms Ardern and Mr Gayford's backgrounds, relationship and the Government's relationship with Māori under Labour.

On 'Jacindamania'

Ms Ardern told Mr Wooley she hasn't paid much attention to 'Jacindamania'.

"Day to day, I'm still a Kiwi who happens to have a really privileged role, and that's the bit that I concentrate on," said Ms Ardern.

"There's not a lot of time to reflect on what everyone else says about you or your situation."

Mr Gayford, who was already known to Kiwis before Ms Ardern became Prime Minister after years on TV, said his partner's star "has been a lot brighter than mine".

But he expects the pressures of leadership won't change her.

"I'm a plant. I've been put in place just to work out if there are any cracks in the veneer, and I can honestly say there's none. There is no difference between what you see here and what she's like at home."

"Except in the mornings," countered Ms Ardern.

"In the mornings... there are a few tense moments," Mr Gayford concurred.

Jacinda Ardern and Clarke Gayford react to being asked about the timing of their unborn baby's conception.
Jacinda Ardern and Clarke Gayford react to being asked about the timing of their unborn baby's conception. Photo credit: Channel 9/60 Minutes Australia

Ms Ardern said becoming a house-husband won't be difficult for Mr Gayford, since he already does "all the household washing".

"It's just a job that needs doing," he told Mr Wooley, who appeared shocked by the revelation.

Ms Ardern said her partner took it upon himself to do all the washing because she was consistently failing to wash her red clothes separately.

"Look, if you're going to do something, do it properly," said Mr Gayford.

Winston's thoughts

Mr Wooley also spoke to Winston Peters, who leads New Zealand First - the party that put Ms Ardern into power by siding with them following last year's coalition negotiations.

"I have never said a bad word about Jacinda, which is somewhat unique for me in politics in this country," the infamously irritable Mr Peters told him.

"She's genuine... Whatever you might think of what she says, there's a certain honesty of thought behind it."

He said criticism of Ms Ardern's pregnancy was "politically biased".

"Of course she can [lead and have a baby at the same time]. I've seen and heard some extraordinary statements on that matter."


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