'Make sure you will tell us, Prime Minister, won’t you?'
A Today show presenter took a subtle swipe at Scott Morrison this morning, sneaking in a cheeky comment at the end of his interview with the Prime Minister.
Fill-in host Jonathan Uptin questioned Mr Morrison about the backlash to his recent Hawaiian holiday.
As the interview came to a close Uptin took the opportunity to take a sneaky jab at Mr Morrison by asking him if he would be taking any more holidays before the end of the year.
"Before the end of 2019? At the moment, if I get to take a few days with the family, I will always seek to do that, if I get that opportunity," the Prime Minister said.
"Make sure you will tell us as well, Prime Minister, won't you?" Uptin interjected.
That was a reference to the fact that Mr Morrison did not release a statement telling the public he was going on leave last week. For days, his office refused to reveal where he was, leading to accusations of secrecy.
Mr Morrison looked stunned for a moment before assuring Uptin that he would "follow the proper processes".
The interview came after the PM returned home early from a family holiday to Hawaii.
His decision to take leave sparked furious reactions from many Australians due to the deadly bushfires raging across the country.
He arrived home on Saturday night after fires in NSW claimed the lives of two volunteer firefighters, Andrew O'Dwyer and Geoff Keaton.
Mr Morrison addressed the controversy on Sunday morning during a press conference at the headquarters of the Rural Fire Service in Sydney, saying if he had his time again he would have made "different decisions".
He was grilled again this morning about the timing of his holiday, with Uptin asking him if Australians could trust their Prime Minister's instincts given he went to Hawaii in the middle of the bushfire crisis.
"Look, I suspect Australians are very fair-minded people. They know that whether you are a prime minister or anyone else, you juggle the demands of family and I have a young family as Australians know, and the demands of your role and your work that's as true for a prime minister as it is for anyone else and you try and make the best decisions," Mr Morrison said.
"Where you can think you could have made better decisions, you are upfront with the Australian people about that, which I was yesterday."
He said the fires have been burning for months and they are expected to continue to burn for a long time.
The PM then mentioned all the fire affected communities he had visited over the past few months, including the families of the two RFS volunteer firefighters who lost their lives.
But Uptin wasn't letting Mr Morrison get off lightly, speaking about all the firefighters who would be missing Christmas with their families before asking if he accepted the criticism that his comments "missed the mark".
"I was very upfront about that yesterday. I was very clear about my regrets and the apologies I made yesterday," Mr Morrison said.
"But I also thank the many Australians for their messages of support at the same time and including those I was with yesterday.
"They understand what the focus needs to be and that is on what's happening on the fire grounds and the volunteer efforts to support that. But they understand what the role of the Prime Minister is, what a role of the Premier is, of a fire commissioner.
"I mean, these days I could stay in regular contact as I was and obviously returned home after we had the tragic loss of Andrew and Geoff. And Jenny and I felt very strongly about that, that's why I returned."
Mr Morrison was then asked if he was "embarrassed" at how Australia, and his leadership, was being seen globally.
"People from outside Australia will make whatever comments they want," Mr Morrison said.
"I'll set Australia's policies consistent with what I took to the last election and what I believe and my government believes is Australia's national interest."
Mr Morrison claimed Australia's emissions has fallen for the past two years and were 50 million tonnes on average lower every year under the Liberal Government.
"Australia is taking action on climate change. What we won't do is engage in reckless and job-destroying and economy crunching targets which are being sought to be postured to us at the moment, taking advantage of national disasters," he said.
"Because no Australian would think that the direct policies of any single government in the world is directly linked to any fire event."