Jackie Blue, MP for [insert region here], accidentally unmasked National’s media practices when she published a blog post called “Generic Column – Lifting Education Standards” and forgot to add the ‘personal touch’. Now, the Dimpost has shown that the Nats are still using these [insert region here] columns to spread the party line.
Danyl has published an email from a reader, I’ll copy the first half here:
Repeat after me
National Party MPs are some of the laziest state beneficiaries in the country. Any journalist receiving a press release from one of them should be very wary of a party that is master making their MPs mimic a line.
For instance: Simon Bridges, who for some reason is considered an up-and-comer in the National caucus, put out a press release entitled “7,757 warmer, drier homes in the Bay of Plenty”
This is eerily similar to Kanwaljit Singh Bakshi who put out one called “21 426 warmer, drier homes in Auckland”
Dr Jackie Blue built on this in her own “warmer, dryer homes” press release by saying “At this time of year, it’s particularly important that our homes are warm, dry, and healthy. Those families who have taken advantage of the Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart scheme will be feeling the benefits now that winter is well and truly on us.’
Colin King copied all that including what must simply be a tracked change line “Thanks to new under-floor insulation, ceiling insulation, and clean heating such as a heat pump, more than 944 Marlborough households now have healthier homes”
This is exactly the same as Nicky Wagner’s “[INSERT NUMBER OF TARGET PUNTERS HERE]” and “[INSERT TARGET ELECTORATE HERE]” press release.
However, it’s not just current MPs who got caught up in the copycat act – National’s Wellington Central candidate Paul Foster-Bell opined that “This is a win-win situation for Wellington. If you haven’t yet had your home retrofitted, you can call EECA on 0800 749 782 to find out if you’re eligible” – calling into question whether parliamentary services is being used to support National candidates.
National: for that authentic local touch.