Despite his best efforts, it’s clear Bill Shorten doesn’t have a career as a comedian to fall back on should his political endeavours fail.
The Opposition leader put his banter skills to work on Tuesday night during an appearance on The Weekly‘s segment Hard Chat.
The segment sees straight-faced comedian Tom Gleeson ask guests challenging, hilarious questions in an ominous, face-to-face setting inspired by more serious news shows.
Gleeson’s delivery often leaves his guests hamstrung and unsure whether to respond seriously or sarcastically.
Shorten grappled with this dilemma during his interview, as he was asked questions like: “What policy are you most proud of pretending to care about?”
“I don’t pretend,” Shorten responded before being cut off by a wise-cracking Gleeson, who suggested Shorten was even pretending to like him.
“No I like you,” Shorten argued.
“Flattery is not going to work,” Gleeson shot back, “I’m a high-income earner I’d never vote Labor.”
Shorten did his best to keep up with Gleeson’s potshots and maintain a straight face throughout.
“Now, you marched at Mardi Gras with your wife, was that because you wanted to rub it in their noses that you can get married and they can’t?” Gleeson joked.
Despite the grilling, the Labor leader ended the interview on a positive note.
“Hey that wasn’t so bad, I’ll tell Malcolm not to be so scared about coming on the show,” he said.
Watch the full interview below.