Ok. It was an interesting strategy.
Get Nick Clegg to do a party political broadcast to face down the issue that’s hammered his personal ratings and the polling of his party.
Breaking the pledge on tuition fees.
It was always going to be high risk. It raises the issue of mistrust again and let’s face it, the public tend to be immune to the impact of a politician’s apology.
Also it was highlighted by many on Twitter last night when it was shown, that he wasn’t apologising for tripling tuition fees. He was saying sorry for making the pledge to abolish them if elected.
In his defence, Clegg’s argument that they didn’t win the election and they had to compromise holds some water.
But it shows that making political promises that can’t be kept is hugely damaging to a party’s reputation.
However this morning, Clegg’s team pulled a master stroke.
Video artist Alex Ross did an autotune mix of Clegg’s apology broadcast for The Poke site.
Quite simply, it’s the funniest bit of political satire since mydavidcameron.com.
Like mydavidcameron.com, it went viral. It even crashed The Poke’s site, such was the level of demand.
But here’s the difference.
Unlike Cameron who ignored the mickey take, Clegg embraced it and turned it to his advantage.
The Poke cheekily asked if they could release it as a download and Clegg agreed – via Twitter.
The one condition? All profits go to the Sheffield Children’s hospital in his constituency.
So he shows he’s a politician with a sense of humour, he raises money for a kid’s hospital AND his message about being sorry get’s a cool remix with greater coverage
Ok, there will be those that say the video makes him look an idiot. But they’ll NEVER change their opinion of him.
Me? I think it’s the smartest and most authentic stunt a politician has done in years.
If they have any sense, the Lib Dems should hire Alex Ross to do their next Party Political Broadcast.
And Clegg should show he has the last laugh – by walking on to the ‘I’m Sorry’ before his conference speech.