Politicians need thick skin. From your first day as a candidate, you should anticipate frequent public confrontations with aggrieved constituents, ear-splitting protesters, brash journalists and obnoxious commentators. It comes with the territory.
When I was prime minister, the media would frequently camp outside my home, stake out my electorate office and throng my local church on Sundays. I even once found a reporter lurking in the pew behind me, apparently trying to eavesdrop.
John Howard copped similar treatment, most notably on his morning walks, and managed with great dignity. The ABC’s political comedy troupe, The Chaser, followed both of us around the country for months, involving us in increasingly bizarre stunts.