Poliitiline spinning Eestis Res Publica näitel



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The aim of the present thesis was to explain as widely and openly as possible what is political spin. To understand different approaches to the concept of the political spin I have used several authors who have all dealt with the issue. In modern democracies, specially the likes of USA, UK or Australia the phrase spin doctor has become something closely connected with lies, scandals, indecency, moral corruption or the lack of good old decent values. Spin doctors are seen as someone sinister, trying to put together some sort of conspiracy plan to topple the government or create a political scandal. There is no doubt, that most of the spin doctors however are morally and ethically well balanced and do not see scandals or indecent exposures as their primary targets. Their role is to manage and maintain good media relations between their clients (politicians) and the representatives of media. The need for these media communication directors applies on the highest level during the election campaigns. Usually during the campaigns there are so many different parties, pressure or lobby groups, activists or different candidates all fighting out for their share in the news media or any other political debate. Not only political debate, but prior to elections it is rather common to see politicians acting out in a rather strange manner just to get some publicity in order to swing some of the electorate to gain some more votes. Spin doctor is a phrase that came out from America at 1980’s during the Presidential Election campaign. Originally it reflected the media communication director’s efforts to convince representatives of the media, that their clients have got the best ideas and are the best people for the political vacancy or ministerial post. These days the spin-doctors work in large public relations companies where they produce some of the most highly sophisticated and detailed strategies for media management. Some legendary self made spin doctors have made their name as working for the acting President or Prime Minister in power- George Stephanopoulos or Allistar Cample to name few. The aim of this theses was to analyze of how much was political spin and the work of spin doctors to play part in the recent huge success of a political party called Res Publica. The right wing party, which was conducted in December 2000. In 2002 they won pretty much the local elections and in 2003 they triumphed at the General elections in which they gained 28 seats at the Parliament. The largest political party in Estonia, Keskerakond who was predicted to win the elections, gained also 28 seats but Res Publica was announced as a winner because they had loads more possible coalitions partners to form the government. And so they did. For two years in which after the Prime Minister, who was the leader of Res Publica, resigned. When Res Publica formed into a political party, they came on to the scene as someone young, vibrant, exiting, dynamic. They used all the right words and expressions in the book to win the hearts and the minds of the electorate and even some of the media and columnist. This thesis concentrates on how they managed to win the public support with such a short time and how they managed to loose it just as fast. Res Publica used methods, that turned out to be very successful for the short period of time. When they came on to the scene, they stood behind the slogan New Politics. They criticised the government heavily for the lack of moral authority. When the Res Publica was looking for a new leader, a man with a very high moral profile joined the party. Jaanus Parts had long been in charge of the Government Audit’s Office and was known for his criticism towards the ministers for their misuses of public money. When he joined the Res Publica, he very quick became the leader of the party. He had clean resume, had not been in politics, had the trust of the public and the nation. Res Publica conducted their campaigns on some clearly chosen slogans. They avoided detailed discussions of policies. Instead they kept advertising themselves as a new party, which has got the answers. The tactics paid off. However, twice lucky but not the third time. In 2004, prior to the Elections for the European Parliament number of famous people had joined Res Publica because it was seen as a success. One of the newcomer, who had joined was the internationally famed and successful supermodel Carmen Kass. She ran for a seat in European Parliament. Her campaign was heavily conducted by all kinds of different media communication directors and imago gurus, spin doctors to say the least. Her campaign took off and was something that the Estonians where just not ready yet. The campaign was more like a road-show rather than a political campaign in which we saw the young supermodel parachute the skies, visiting the local (RSPCA) home for homeless pets or the shelter for homeless people. The media coverage of her campaign was huge but the public remained sceptical. Res Publica lost its dominance during the European elections 2004. The public was disappointed that there was no real actions behind all the nice slogans and messages com- municated to the public, prior to two previous election campaigns. It remains to be seen whether Res Publica will ever strike back with the same force.


H Social Sciences (General), bakalaureusetööd