IN THE NEWS THIS WEEK: It’s only Tuesday, and ScoMo has had quite the week
On Sunday night Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife Jenny sat down with Karl Stefanovic for an intimate interview on 60 Minutes answering all of Australia’s burning questions (is that too on the tongue?).
Jenny appeared to be there to rescue her husband from any questions he might not be able to answer appropriately. The greatest PR move, although slightly tone deaf, was redirecting a question about their infamous Hawaii getaway to her – labelling the trip was “misjudged” and “something they just wanted to do for their kids”.
The interview was followed up with a performance of Morrison playing the ukulele, while his family and Stefanovic sat around the table looking visibly uncomfortable at his attempt to seem relatable. The public reaction was mixed, leading Morrison to respond saying “if people want to sneer at [him] then they are sneering at millions, because we all play our ukulele at dinner”.
The minimal positive PR was short lived as the very next day the PM sparked fury among Aboriginal leaders in Parliament by inciting that forgiveness is an act of grace, giving the impression that people who have been traumatized should be told how to feel. We’d hate to be his PR team right now.
On one hand the 60 Minute interview could be enough to keep his loyal followers on side among the onslaught of media commentary leading to the election. On the other hand, when speaking on such a sensitive topic as our history and apology to Indigenous Australians, I think Morrison should have kept it simple or at least ha someone from this community approve the speech. As all good publicists would tell you, you want as many eyes across messaging as possible – especially when it’s a sensitive topic such as this.
By Grace Drummond – PR & Influencer Coordinator at InsideOut PR and #AsSeenOn