Credit where it is due. The creation of the ‘brand’ that is John Key has been impressive. The state house “back-story”, the “just one of us” media strategy complete with beer slugging and commercial breakfast radio japes, the pragmatic, “relaxed” approach to the job.
But it seems in a few short days, under the pressure of an election campaign, much of the good work has unravelled. This morning on Firstline Duncan Garner made some very interesting observations that John Key seems to have ” lost all the character of the past in showing spontaneity”, “never seen him like this in the past, starting to see the changing face of the PM”.
Key has, as other PMs before him, assiduously worked the media, and has made them his friends. Over the last few days he has shown the worst of a ‘politician’ response to a self made political disaster, all but accusing them of having a conspiracy against him.
John Armstrong sums it up in the Herald this morning. The PM has lost control of this issue and is trapped by his tactic of referring it to the Police. But more than that his approach is running totally counter to the brand developed over the last few years
Key’s abrupt ending of his press conferences looked like the pressure is getting to him. It made him look shifty and weak
And shifty and weak is not part of the brand strategy. As they say, a week is a long time in politics.