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Richard Ingrams:

I pointed out last week how Mr Blair had been publicly humiliated when he appeared on Channel 5 to answer questions from members of the public. One young man asked him how, in view of all the disastrous consequences of the Iraqi invasion, including thousands of deaths, he was able to sleep at night.

My colleague Andrew Rawnsley, however, saw it in a different light. Was it not possible, he asked, that Blair’s humiliation was something that had been deliberately encouraged by Alastair Campbell and his fellow spin doctors? The idea would be that the public, when seeing the Prime Minister under fire from all quarters, would feel sympathy welling up and thus be more likely to vote Labour come the general election than they were before.

An interesting theory, but I doubt this is the case. People want a strong leader who can stand the heat, not someone who looks, as Kirsty pointed out, like he’s being tortured. Still, I’m no political strategist, and who can say what Campbell and Co are up too?

This post was filed under: Election 2005.

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Comments and responses

Comment from sjhoward (author of the post)


    00.56, 26/08/2005

I may have doubted it at the time, but the masochism strategy is now widely seen as something that helped swing the election in Blair’s favour. Shows how much I know.




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