A behind the scenes photo of Boris Johnson’s campaign isn’t a good omen of what he’s got coming

Boris Johnson
Tracy Keeling

Boris Johnson made a speech in front of his “Get Brexit Done” bus on 15 November. When covering the story, the media used imagery that made the PM look, well, suitability prime ministerial:

But a Manchester-based editor took an image from a position that won’t make Conservative campaign staff happy. It shows an entirely different, and less grandiose, situation. And he’s not the only Conservative PM to have the wind taken out of his sails in this way. Things didn’t end well for the last one who used this trick either.

The tale of two pictures

The BBC and other outlets shared images or footage from an advantageous position  – for Johnson::

But Jennifer Williams, politics and investigations editor for the Manchester Evening News, offered an entirely different perspective, as the Guardian pointed out:

So, although the front-facing pictures make it look like Johnson is knee-deep in supporters, the reality is that he’s got some people huddled around him in a “half empty warehouse”.

Admittedly, Johnson has also tried going out into places where people are, rather than inviting a select few into warehouses. That didn’t go so well for the PM:

Remember when?

Theresa May used the same tactic in the 2017 general election. Pictures from her campaign trail were very similar to Johnson’s:

But a bystander snapped the reality and put it on social media for all to see:

One of May’s most infamous phrases from that election campaign was “nothing has changed!” Although that was incorrect within the context she used it, it appears to hold true today. It seems the Tories don’t change their spots. Or, indeed, learn from their mistakes.

After using such tactics in 2017, May lost her party its majority. That’s not a good omen of things to come for Johnson.

Featured image via The Telegraph/YouTube

We need your help ...

The coronavirus pandemic is changing our world, fast. And we will do all we can to keep bringing you news and analysis throughout. But we are worried about maintaining enough income to pay our staff and minimal overheads.

Now, more than ever, we need a vibrant, independent media that holds the government to account and calls it out when it puts vested economic interests above human lives. We need a media that shows solidarity with the people most affected by the crisis – and one that can help to build a world based on collaboration and compassion.

We have been fighting against an establishment that is trying to shut us down. And like most independent media, we don’t have the deep pockets of investors to call on to bail us out.

Can you help by chipping in a few pounds each month?

The Canary Support us