‘Are you kidding?’: Lisa’s bold question
Six months after the death of Bob Hawke, his wife of 25 years Blanche d'Alpuget has sat down with Lisa Wilkinson to reflect on their relationship together.
Mr Hawke, Australia's third longest-serving prime minister, died in May, two days before the 2019 federal election.
Regarded as one of the nation's best and most popular prime ministers, he was also constantly dogged by rumours about his personal life.
One rumour, that he was having an affair with his biographer Ms d'Alpuget, was true.
RELATED: Bob Hawke dies aged 89
After he was ousted as prime minister in 1991 by Paul Keating, Mr Hawke divorced his wife Hazel.
Months later, he and Ms d'Alpuget married - but it wasn't without controversy.
During her Sunday Project interview, Ms d'Alpuget occasionally shot looks at Wilkinson as she was asked if the former PM ever felt guilty about marrying his mistress.
"Do you think Bob had a problem with the fact that this relationship had begun?" Wilkinson asked.
"Are you kidding?" Ms d'Alpuget shot back, laughing.
"Serious question. Did he ever suffer guilt?" Wilkinson responded.
"He was perpetually unfaithful. He loved Hazel and he was perpetually unfaithful," Ms d'Alpuget said.
While Mr Hawke travelled Australia fighting to be re-elected as prime minister, his wife Hazel stood by him despite his affair.
"Did you feel guilty about the role that Hazel was playing at that point, she was publicly the first lady, she was also keeping the home fires burning with the kids, how hard was that for you to reconcile?" Wilkinson asked.
"Look, it wasn't an issue because Bob was not a faithful husband so I didn't feel I was doing anything bad," she said.
But Wilkinson wasn't done with the difficult questions, also asking Ms d'Alpuget about Hazel's death from dementia in 2013.
"This is a hard question but I feel I have to ask it because I think there was a mood in Australia around the time that we discovered that Hazel had dementia, I think there was a feeling that Hazel got the worst of Bob and you got the best of Bob, do you think that's a fair assessment?" she asked.
"No because her time as the wife of the prime minister was absolutely wonderful for her, he wasn't drinking, she had all of the liberty and the restrictions of being the prime minister's wife but all the good things she was able to do, socially, for society and herself," Ms d'Alpuget replied.
Ms d'Alpuget admitted it had taken her months to come to terms with Mr Hawke's death - something that wasn't helped by people constantly offering their condolences.
Despite his death, Ms d'Alpuget said her husband's send-off was exactly what he would've wanted.
"I think he would have been delighted because it was such a celebration and it was so well done… it was very uplifting for really the whole country," she said.