Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has modified an iconic Arnold Schwarzenegger line criticise Labor leader Bill Shorten, taking inspiration from the actor-turned-politician for the second time in recent history.
“When it comes to the economy, when it comes to budget repair Bill Shorten clearly is an economic boy man,” he told reporters in Canberra on Thursday.
Senator Cormann, who is of Belgian origin, has been likened to Schwarzenegger, the Austrian-born former Californian governor who used the term “girlie men” to characterise political opponents in a debate over that state’s budget.
Last year, the Finance Minister was labelled a ‘d–khead’ for calling Bill Shorten an “economic girly man”.
At the time, Leader of the Opposition in the Senate Penny Wong was scathing in her criticism of the comment.
“If we use ‘girl’ as an insult, what are we telling our sons and our daughters about being a girl? You are saying it is somehow less competent, weak, whatever the imputation,” she said.
Schwarzenegger, who was elected Governor of California after a long career as an action film star, used the line in this famous 2004 speech.