Daily Mail’s own goal wins Miliband the sympathy vote
The Daily Mail’s criticism of Ed Miliband’s father has made its editorial team look petty – as if it hasn’t anything better to do but take low blows at the Labour party. Publishing a picture of the Leader of the Opposition’s dead father’s grave was more than just an ‘error of judgement’, it was out of order.
But if the newspaper’s strategy was to sway public opinion against Miliband, it may have just back-fired.
This week’s events will not only attract sympathy from many, but also provide Miliband with a chance to improve his reputation and the perception the public has of him. The Daily Mail has actually created a platform of interest for Miliband to share details about his family life and how his upbringing provided him with the skills necessary to be a Labour leader.
On Saturday, the Daily Mail printed an article alleging that Miliband’s father hated Britain – a bold move for the paper which has since been criticised heavily by the Labour party. Since this was printed however, Miliband has had the opportunity to not only defend his father, but also to talk (in The Daily Mail and other publications) about his family background and formative years.
Miliband should take this opportunity firmly with both hands and use this interest in his family to broadcast his messages as the Labour leader. This attention may have started off negatively, but there is now a chance to turn this around and use it to his advantage. No one would have batted an eyelid if Miliband had come out saying his father loved Britain – however now the Daily Mail has printed such a controversial piece arguing the contrary, suddenly Miliband has a captive audience to talk about his background and how this makes him a good leader.
From a party political perspective, the Daily Mail’s misjudgment is Ed Miliband’s gain.
Rachael Chew, PR Professional at Smarts PR