The Project’s Sam Taunton left red-faced after Senator Bridget McKenzie cuts him down to size live on air

The Project’s Sam Taunton was left red-faced during Wednesday night’s show after a joke to Senator Bridget McKenzie fell flat live on air.

Ms McKenzie was discussing Liberal party leader Peter Dutton’s proposed plan to introduce seven nuclear reactors across Australia, when funnyman Taunton decided to crack a gag. 

‘It’s one of the biggest stories of the year. I always wonder, when you have a policy roll out, it must be very stressful,’ Sam began.

‘What do you do at the end of the day, do you go home and watch TV? I hear Chernobyl’s a really good show to watch,’ he continued. 

Taunton’s awkward TV suggestion referred to the 2019 HBO miniseries Chernobyl, which dramatised the real life 1986 tragedy in Ukraine where a Nuclear Power Plant exploded, resulting in the deaths of 30 people.

The Project’s Sam Taunton (pictured) was left red-faced during Wednesday night’s show after a joke to Senator Bridget McKenzie fell flat live on air

Ms McKenzie (pictured) was discussing Liberal party leader Peter Dutton 's proposed plan to introduce seven nuclear reactors across Australia, when funnyman Taunton decided to crack a gag

Ms McKenzie (pictured) was discussing Liberal party leader Peter Dutton ‘s proposed plan to introduce seven nuclear reactors across Australia, when funnyman Taunton decided to crack a gag 

Ms McKenzie was quick to shoot down Taunton live on air, adding she would prefer to watch The Simpsons, before making her feelings known. 

‘Wow. Really funny,’ she replied, with her quip being felt across The Project panel. 

‘I think she just nuked you Sam!’ quipped co-host Sarah Harris.

In January 2023, Taunton replaced Peter Helliar on The Project, after the comedian left the popular panel show after nine years. 

Taunton's awkward TV suggestion referred to the 2019 HBO miniseries Chernobyl, which dramatised the real life 1986 tragedy in Ukraine where a Nuclear Power Plant exploded, resulting in the deaths of 30 people

Taunton’s awkward TV suggestion referred to the 2019 HBO miniseries Chernobyl, which dramatised the real life 1986 tragedy in Ukraine where a Nuclear Power Plant exploded, resulting in the deaths of 30 people 

Ms McKenzie was quick to shoot down Taunton live on air, adding she would prefer to watch The Simpsons, before making her feelings known. 'Wow. Really funny,' she replied, with her quip being felt across The Project panel. 'I think she just nuked you Sam!' quipped co-host Sarah Harris. Pictured: Harris and co-host Waleed Aly

Ms McKenzie was quick to shoot down Taunton live on air, adding she would prefer to watch The Simpsons, before making her feelings known. ‘Wow. Really funny,’ she replied, with her quip being felt across The Project panel. ‘I think she just nuked you Sam!’ quipped co-host Sarah Harris. Pictured: Harris and co-host Waleed Aly

In January 2023, Taunton replaced Peter Helliar on The Project, after the comedian left the popular panel show after nine years

In January 2023, Taunton replaced Peter Helliar on The Project, after the comedian left the popular panel show after nine years  

At the time, he confessed to The Daily Telegraph, he was nervous about joining the show and replacing Peter, who he described as being part of Australia’s ‘comedy landscape’.

‘Pete and Hughesy – they’re obviously part of the Australian comedy landscape and they were so well-known before starting the show,’ he said.

‘I was a bit “how am I going to go?” And I was s**t scared that I would screw it up – I don’t think I have yet,’ he added.

Sam, who has a degree in political science, explained he felt like he was pushed into the deep end.

‘I felt like being in charge of a busy café on a Saturday morning, having never worked in a café,’ he said.

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