Last night the Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, and her partner, Clarke Gayford, were interviewed for Australia’s 60 Minute TV programme.
There has been some criticism here of the interviewer, Charles Wooley, who asked some very personal questions. He asked the exact date that the baby is due, so that he could count back 40 weeks to see if it was conceived during the election campaign. Many people found this question offensive and sexist, but Jacinda today said she had been asked this question before, so she was used to it. It didn’t worry her, but she also said that it was ‘too much information’. She probably meant that people did not need to know this personal information.
The programme also focused on her photo in Vogue magazine which showed her looking very young and attractive. The article in Vogue also showed her clothes. She enjoys dressing in attractive clothes. “I’ve met a lot of prime ministers in my time, but none so young, not too many so smart, and never one so attractive,” said the interviewer, Charles Wooley.
He has been criticised for not showing an interest in Ardern’s policies, but he said that the Australian audience did not want to know about politics in New Zealand. People were more interested in the personal side of the Prime Minister. That is probably true of any interview with a Prime Minister of another country, especially one who is young, female and pregnant.
• criticism (n), criticise (v) – making an unfavourable judgment, a negative view
• offensive (adj) – unpleasant, causing anger
• sexist (adj) – a question that he would not ask a man
• policies (n) – those things that a government wants to do like improve the economy
1. If you were interviewing Jacinda Ardern, what questions would you ask?
2. Would these be the same questions you would ask the Prime Minister of the UK or Germany? They are both female but quite a bit older.