Watch as Minister of Education calls Simon Bridges 'a chauvinistic pig', after National leader's tense exchange with Jacinda Ardern

A tense exchange in Parliament today between Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Simon Bridges ended in Education Minister Chris Hipkins describing the National leader as a "chauvinistic pig". 

"Is she aware that under her Government, 60,000 people have been on strike in just 10 months compared to 30,000 in the previous nine years?" Mr Bridges asked in Question Time. 

Today thousands of primary teachers walked off the job to protest for better pay and conditions. 

"I absolutely acknowledge that because the [previous] Government couldn’t resolve the nurses pay dispute, that we did have a situation we needed to resolve," Ms Ardern said.

"It took this Government doubling that offer [National] last made in office, acknowledging the safety concerns that nurses had, the under staffing and under resourcing."

"That is how we got to a successful resolution after nine long years."

Mr Bridges asked, as teachers contemplated a further two days of strikes, "does she intend to spend the next two years avoiding any responsibility and not actually fixing the problem".

"I find that line of questioning a bit rich," Ms Ardern said. 

During the questioning, Mr Bridges was made to retract and apologise over a comment saying "I was anticipating an answer from the ventriloquist".

Education Minister Chris Hipkins was shortly after also made to withdraw and apologise.

"I apologise for calling the leader of the Opposition a chauvinistic pig".

Speaker Trevor Mallard gave the Opposition five extra questions and made Mr Hipkins apologise again.