Andrew MacRae speaks in the Liberal Party of Australia's ad campaign video
Andrew MacRae speaks in the Liberal Party of Australia's ad campaign video YouTube/Liberal Party of Australia

The “fake tradie” in Liberal Party of Australia’s campaign ad is a real metalworker. Andrew MacRae has insisted he is a real tradesperson and a real Liberal supporter.

Since the ad was released earlier this week, social media users have panned the video, claiming the tradesperson in the video was just an actor. The hashtag #FakeTradie trended online, with people criticising every small detail in the ad, including the gold armband and the silver watch the tradie wore.

YouTube/Liberal Party of Australia

“So let me get this right. Mr Shorten wants to go to war with my bank, he wants to go to war with miners,” the tradie said in the ad campaign. “Bill Shorten even wants to go to war with someone like me!”

The video features two voices, one from the tradie and another from the voice over. However, the credit only lists one name, “Spoken by A. MacRae.” This led other people to incorrectly point to a voice actor who is also named Andrew MacRae. This MacRae has denied any connection to the Liberal Party campaign.

There’s another Andrew MacRae, though, and he is really a tradesperson. He owns a sole-trading company called Teamwork Maintenance and is a licensed metal fabricator. The 50-year-old real tradie said he is the real deal, even showing his NSW government contractor’s licence to the Daily Mail to prove his profession.

“They’re all laughing,” MacRae the ute-driving metalworker said of his friends’ reaction to the hype. He declined to say anything more as he had signed an agreement with the NSW Liberal Party not to talk to the media.

His friend, Domenico Coviello, added MacRae is also a Liberal supporter, saying, “He’s definitely betting for the Blues on the Liberal side. He’s a real tradie – he’d be a fitter-turner [metalworker] but he’s an all-rounder. He’s a good bloke.”

Coviello admitted, though, that the ad did indeed look fake because MacRae was not normally dressed as he was in the video. “It looks very fake – it’s a TV shoot you know, it’s not a real site situation.”

If MacRae owned an investment property as he said in the video, Coviello had no idea. “I doubt it,” the friend said.