Pauline Hanson and Mark Latham appeared to have a grand old time on 60 Minutes. Picture: Channel 9
Pauline Hanson and Mark Latham appeared to have a grand old time on 60 Minutes. Picture: Channel 9

Hanson, Latham leave Australia cringing

WHEN Mark Latham joined Pauline Hanson's One Nation party in November, the one question on everyone's lips was how long the political hook-up would last.

Fast-forward four months later and the unlikely pair are cracking jokes and sharing cringe-worthy praise for each other.

Critics believe the extraordinary team-up will explode in disaster, with little room in Ms Hanson's self-named party for the former Labor Party, former Liberal Democrat Party maverick.

But the pair put on a united front during their 60 Minutes interview on Sunday night, claiming they were as strong as ever and a real threat to the political landscape.

Senator Hanson declared the controversial politicians were not going to back down because a "precious few" wanted them to change their views.

"It's not gonna happen," she told 60 Minutes.

"Everyone wants to have a go at us because we are prepared to stand up and speak up for ourselves on policy, and what's happening in this country.

"But you try to pull us down for whatever little reason … I'm sick of it. I'm over it. Let the people judge us, and they'll have their say at the ballot box."

 

Pauline Hanson and Mark Latham appeared to have a grand old time on 60 Minutes. Picture: Channel 9
Pauline Hanson and Mark Latham appeared to have a grand old time on 60 Minutes. Picture: Channel 9

Presenter Liz Hayes told them: "You know that the view is that you two cannot last?"

"Well, you know, what I find curious is the focus on us," Mr Latham said.

"I suppose that is because we're outspoken, we try to speak the truth, and we say things that the lefties in particular don't like, and we cop all the outrage. The others …

"Because they see us as a threat, Mark," Ms Hanson cut in.

"That's what it is. They see us as a threat and it's all wishful thinking that they want to see us not work together and it'll sort of finish."

 

While viewers agreed their "marriage" wouldn't last long, most were fuming their Sunday night television had been hijacked by the politicians.

Others enjoyed their real approach and said the pair was "made for each other".

"Watching #SBS the brilliant program Dr Jane Goodall-my life with chimpanzees. Tempted to switch to #60Mins to see Hanson & Latham but preferred to stay with intelligent life instead," said one Aussie on Twitter.

 

 

Mr Latham said he stood by what he had written about Ms Hanson once: "The Hanson persona is a perfect match for the One Nation constituency, resentful, distrustful, and overwhelmingly negative."

He brushed it off to being a Labor Party politician at the time and Ms Hanson jumped in to his defence, reminding Hayes that was 18 years ago.

Ms Hanson said she saw Mr Latham's potential when she was first elected in 1996.

"I always imagined Mark to be a future Prime Minister," she said.

While the pair discussed their admiration for each other, they admitted there was one issue they clashed on - banning the burqa, an issue Ms Hanson has championed.

"He doesn't agree with banning it completely in communities or on streets and that type of thing, but we have talked about it and compromised," Hanson said.

"If they wear it in their own mosque, if they wanna wear it in their own home, Mark didn't believe that was a real problem. I, you know, think that to wear the full burqa, the full covering, especially getting your driver's licence or driving a car is not feasible. It's unworkable. Where it does impact on society is in banks, in government buildings, in schools, in hospitals and these type of things."

To prove her point Ms Hanson wore a burqa into the Senate in 2017.

"The main thing is Pauline whipped it off quickly and that's what everyone should do," Mr Latham said in trying to cut the conversation about the topic.

"Whip it off quickly and get rid of it."

But he made it clear he had no intention to do any such thing to Ms Hanson or One Nation.

"It's not going to become Mark Latham's One Nation and I'm not going to bugger off anywhere," he said.