Mike Smith has posted at The Standard in a forlorn attempt to promote David Shearer.
David Shearer had Key on the back foot today in the House over Labour’s housing policy. It’s a good policy, and Key’s long-winded explanations didn’t answer Shearer’s pointed questions; even Speaker Lockwood Smith sat Key down for going on too long and off the point. Key had to be rescued by Chief Whip Michael Woodhouse with a patsy question, but the leadership crack it was designed to bring out fell flat too.
Labour’s housing policy is good: practical, specific, getting the economy going, meeting real needs that matter to Kiwis. Shearer means it when he talks about “hands-on government” – what a contrast to Key’s “hands-off can’t remember” approach.
Judith Collins sat beside Key. She looked lovely in pink.
In this case spinning is losing.
The comments that followed have justifiably been scathing. The Standard has been overwhelming critical of Shearer’s leadership (with a few exceptions) but this attempt to pump up Shearer is an extreme example of the failed old formula his spin doctors keep persevering with.
Even the odd reference about Collins was slammed.
This is as cringey as spin gets. The harder his team spins the further Shearer slips from reality and respect. It ain’t pretty.