Radio interview - Nova Perth Breakfast with Nathan, Nat & Shaun

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese
Prime Minister

NATALIE LOCKE, HOST: Nathan, Nat and Shaun, and the reason that we're live from Canberra is last night we went to The Lodge for dinner at the invitation of the Prime Minister. Does he regret that? Let's check in.

SHAUN MCMANUS, HOST: I think he does now.

LOCKE: Albo’s on the phone right now, the host with the most. Good morning, Albo.

ANTHONY ALBANESE, PRIME MINISTER: Good morning. Well, you guys got the great advantage now of having a bit of sleep in this morning, relative to when you're in Perth.

MCMANUS: We did actually.

NATHAN MORRIS, HOST: Thank you. The best thing about Canberra.

PRIME MINISTER: Oh, what about the weather?

MCMANUS: Yeah, you've turned the weather, there's been a little bit of sunshine popping in every now and then.

PRIME MINISTER: You can actually see the sky today, unlike yesterday.

MCMANUS: Yeah, Nathan said yesterday there was a solar flare appearing every now and then, there's just this light coming out.

MORRIS: Albo, in Canberra, I don't know if you realise, when the sun breaks out, it breaks out and it like shoots you like a laser beam.

PRIME MINISTER: People celebrate when the sun comes out in June in Canberra. But I don't mind the fact that there are real seasons here, actually. It's so different from Sydney, where I've lived my whole life, and it's certainly different from Perth, which is always fine weather, except when I go to Perth, when it often rains. I'm bit of a rainmaker, I think, when I'm in the west.

MORRIS: Farmers love you mate, farmers love you.

LOCKE: Yeah farmers and gardeners. Albo, obviously it's a few hours now since we left The Lodge. Have the staff been busy doing the deep clean now that we've gone?

MORRIS: Or have they quit?

PRIME MINISTER: Not at all. No. You were very well behaved and it was a terrific evening. It was great to catch up –

LOCKE: We had such a lovely time.

PRIME MINISTER: In an informal way, and even Toto let you in the house.

MCMANUS: She did.

PRIME MINISTER: You got Toto’s approval on the way through, and even got a little pat as the night went on. So, she doesn't give her affection easily.

LOCKE: No, she's a tough nut to crack, that's for sure.

MORRIS: It was really lovely of you Albo as well, to be able to like just soak in the vibes of The Lodge. Because I honestly thought I was going into a drafty old haunted house. And it's not, it was warm and it was inviting. And then we got to see the touches of your and Jodie's personality through the home. Why don't we talk about your vinyl collection? I asked a question, I said, do you have a certain artist on vinyl? And you said ‘Yes, I do.’ What was that artist, Anthony Albanese?


MORRIS: He has Taylor Swift on vinyl.

LOCKE: You're a big Tay Tay fan, aren't you? You’re a Swiftie all the way through.

PRIME MINISTER: I think she's terrific, and I think that she's empowering of young women. If people actually listen to Shake It Off, the lyrics are fantastic. I think it’s, I quite enjoy her.

LOCKE: It’s good advice for a politician, too, because you're in the spotlight and there’s a lot of criticism.

PRIME MINISTER: You’ve got to do that, exactly. You’ve just got to shake it off. I actually did that at one of the press conferences during the campaign, where I got harassed over ‘do you regret,’ you know, X, I can't even remember what the issue was. And I was like, ‘ah, you know, you’ve just got to shake it off.’

MORRIS: I got to get down to this sick beat.

PRIME MINISTER: Exactly. But you heard a bit of U2, Angie McMahon, Radiohead.

MORRIS: Midnight Oils.

LOCKE: Yeah, Radiohead was on when we arrived.

MCMANUS: I actually did mention, Albo, to Jodie, that you hosted Rage one day, which is one of my favourite shows growing up, the music show on the ABC.

PRIME MINISTER: I loved it. I was in there, I was Deputy Prime Minister, and I was doing their current affairs program, Hack, and afterwards, I was talking to the people who run Rage, the producers, and we're talking music and they were like, ‘oh, you actually know about music’. And we were just chatting away. And it ended up with me saying, ‘yeah, I'm completely up for hosting Rage. It's completely on my bucket list.’ And in order to balance it up, they, I don't want to be too critical of a West Australian who I quite like. She's a friend of mine, but Julie Bishop, they chose as well, as the deputy leader, to balance it up. And she had, I think, Rhinestone Cowboy and a whole lot of stuff. And I was doing Nirvana and The Triffids and Go-Betweens.

MORRIS: Yeah hardcore. She was playing the hits from the jukebox that your parents get at their sixtieth.

PRIME MINISTER: Yeah, it was a bit like that. I'm not sure it was quite the right thing for the Rage audience at 1am in the morning or whenever it's on. But they haven't had me back since, so it's ten years. I should pitch up again.

LOCKE: Yeah, I think so. I think it’s time.

MORRIS: Well we've seen your musical interest, I think that's great fodder. Hey Albo, while we were having dinner in that beautiful dining hall, there were these little salt and pepper things in front of there. And Natalie noticed that as soon as dinner was done, those salt and pepper things went straight away. Are they the things that the staff look that are frightened that people are going to steal the most?

LOCKE: The most nickable?

PRIME MINISTER: Well, I think that might have been the case for you guys. I'd take that personally if I were you.

MORRIS: They were perfect pocket size.

LOCKE: Yes, they’d fit in your pocket very easily.

MORRIS: And they wouldn’t make a big lump in your pocket too.

LOCKE: That's right. And they were whisked away very swiftly.

PRIME MINISTER: You were very fine guests, and it was terrific that it came out of an appearance on your show. And I believe in fulfilling commitments and we did it. Thanks for making the effort of coming across this great island continent of ours, to experience a Canberra winter, and to be able to broadcast from Canberra.

MORRIS: Well, we have a beautiful hotel room.

MCMANUS: Yeah, we have enjoyed it. Obviously we enjoyed last night. When we left, obviously we left a gift with you. And we've all been wondering this morning, how long did that gift last on the mantelpiece before you decided to put it in the fire?

MORRIS: So, for people that don't know.

PRIME MINISTER: It’s still there.

MORRIS: We thought the thing that Anthony Albanese would like the most, the man who has everything, is a framed photo of us.

LOCKE: With him. He’s in it.

MORRIS: With you. So, is it still on the mantle? And don't you lie to us, Albo.

PRIME MINISTER: It is on the mantelpiece. And I will, maybe I can take the odd photo over time with, I don't know, with the front page of newspapers to prove that it's still there, a welfare check on your photo in The Lodge.

LOCKE: I have a feeling you're just going to pull the photo of us out of the frame and put a picture of Toto in. And so the frame remains there, but not us.

PRIME MINISTER: Well there’s a few, there’s enough photos of Toto up in the house.

MORRIS: And look at all the beautiful frames in your house. Remember, this one here was $22 from Bed, Bath and Table.

PRIME MINISTER: Oh no expense spared, what a wonderful gift.

LOCKE: You know why, Albo? Because you're worth it.

PRIME MINISTER: Thanks so much, you're so generous. But the flowers were lovely as well, you got some lovely flowers.

LOCKE: Yes, we did get a lovely bunch of flowers from the local florist here.

MORRIS: Can I just say, Jodie is amazing Albo.


MORRIS: And I know that Jodie doesn’t step out in front of –

LOCKE: Well you’re biased, but we think so, too.

MORRIS: She is a real asset to you and the Labor Party and Australia.

LOCKE: She's a genuinely warm, beautiful, outgoing, gorgeous person.

MORRIS: God, I love her.

PRIME MINISTER: She is. Well, that's four of us think that, as well anyone who meets her.

MORRIS: I’m going to take her from you.

PRIME MINISTER: She's very warm and engaging and her whole career has been about talking to people as well, so she’s very comfortable.

LOCKE: She’s just good value.

PRIME MINISTER: And she is who she is as well. What you see is what you get with her.

MORRIS: I do have to say, I really appreciate what happened last night. Because people think the Prime Minister and of course, the First Lady of Australia, it's going to be very formal or whatever.

LOCKE: Prim and proper.

MORRIS: It was not. It was exactly like being out for dinner with friends.

MCMANUS: It was, very much so.

MORRIS: And as much as that, I found there was some real humanity at The Lodge. Can you tell everyone, Albo, are you able to tell everyone about the really uncomfortable couch in the sitting room? Because that is so uncomfortable.

PRIME MINISTER: Well, it's been there since the 1950s, and it does show when you sit on it, I've got to say. But anyway, that will be dealt with at some stage I’m sure.

MORRIS: What are you talking about, you sit on it and you’re leaning to one side. I know it's got historical value, but this one’s on the verge.

PRIME MINISTER: It's pretty ordinary, to say the least. But at least in the main sitting room, I've got to say, the couches were of different colours. So that, like it's a bit embarrassing when you're sitting, as you do sometimes there, with leaders of other countries. Like, I'm hosting the Sultan of Brunei next week.

LOCKE: Proper dignitaries, yeah.

PRIME MINISTER: The President of Indonesia is coming next month. And it was a little bit embarrassing I found.

LOCKE: It was like a student house with mix-match furniture.

PRIME MINISTER: It was like a student house, actually.

LOCKE: We know you're busy because Parliament is sitting today. We're going to pop by your workplace as well. We're like that needy. So, we are popping into Parliament House today.

MORRIS: Yeah we are, and because we’re like close personal friends, we're just going to walk in, we’re going to say ‘where is he’, and we're just going to walk in and grab you. I want to thank you personally on a personal note as well, for putting on a knit last night for dinner. You took off your suit and you put on a knit and that really made me feel comfortable.

MCMANUS: You were very relaxed with that, weren’t you Nate?

MORRIS: I was wearing a light knit as well, so thank you Albo.

PRIME MINISTER: A light knit and jeans, yeah. It was one of the more relaxed dinners that has happened at The Lodge, I've got to say.

LOCKE: Yeah the staff need therapy, but other than that.

MORRIS: Hey Albo, we kept on saying that the staff must have been behind those doors going, ‘what is happening out there? How did these people get in there?’

PRIME MINISTER: Well, it was good fun. But the good thing about the photo on the mantelpiece – now, don't take this the wrong way, guys. But there will be people who will come in, I'm going to leave it there, I spoke with Jodes about this. And they'll go, ‘I'm sure I should know who those people are, but I have no idea, but I don't want to ask in case I'm being really rude.’ There'll be people going, ‘Why are these people up on the mantelpiece’? I think people will think that we’re all brothers and sisters or something.

LOCKE: Well we would love that to happen. That would be a great outcome for us.

MCMANUS: We were wondering why we were there. That was great. We loved every second of it.

LOCKE: Albo, we really appreciate it. We thank you for coming good on your promise. A politician of his word. Thank you. And happy politicking at Parliament today.

MCMANUS: Yes, absolutely.

PRIME MINISTER: Indeed, and we will catch up either later today here, or over in Perth because you promised us dinner.

MORRIS: I know. At my two bedroom apartment, which is just like The Lodge.

PRIME MINISTER: Exactly. You probably have to have dinner at about 4pm, do you?

LOCKE: And that you can't sit on the couch.

MCMANUS: Yeah, there’ll be security.

MORRIS: Yeah my security will check you way more thoroughly than yours checked us. So don’t you worry about that.

LOCKE: Yeah that cavity search, get ready. Thank you so much, Prime Minister. You're a legend.

PRIME MINISTER: See you guys.