When Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull woke up to appear on Channel Nine’s TODAY Show in the early hours of this morning, he likely wasn’t predicting to be accused of “waffling”.
But that’s precisely what happened when he and the show’s co-host, Karl Stefanovic, engaged in a heated debate about the government’s ongoing citizenship debacle.
There was just one problem, though: the Prime Minister wanted to talk about anything but the citizenship debacle.
As the Prime Minister consistently tried to divert the conversation by talking about the North Korea crisis, Stefanovic interjected and said, “PM, with the greatest respect, you are waffling this morning.”
To which Mr Turnbull responded, “Well, Karl, you’ve got a job. If you are looking for a job and you need a job and you’ve got one because of the strong economic leadership we’ve provided, you may think it’s ‘waffling’. But if you’ve been unemployed and you’re getting a chance to get ahead, you would say you are being very patronising – saying young people getting jobs is ‘waffling’.”
Stefanovic retorted, “OK, this is what I want, this is the real you, this is the real you, this is what we want.”
Listen: We have a message for Malcolm about the same-sex marriage debate. (Post continues…)
And it didn’t stop after that.
In total, the awkward exchange between the pair lasted a full nine minutes, before leaving on civil terms.
This isn’t the first time Prime Minister Turnbull has been grilled on the morning breakfast show. Back in 2015, the 63-year-old found himself in a terse exchange with former TODAY co-host Lisa Wilkinson after she highlighted the challenges he was facing as a new leader.
It’s a tough gig, breakfast TV. Especially when you’re the PM.