The West

Ad pitches McGowan  as man of people
Kitchen cabinet: Mark and Sarah McGowan make breakfast. Picture: State Labor ad.

Mark McGowan's bravery award for pulling a man from a burning car wreckage is being highlighted by Labor in a US presidential-style television advertisement spruiking the Opposition Leader.

Scheduled to run during prime time from last night, it draws heavily from Mr McGowan's past while depicting him as an everyman in touch with ordinary families' priorities.

"Mark McGowan was a naval officer who was decorated for bravery," a female announcer says to the strains of the advertisement's uplifting music.

"He's been in Parliament for 16 years . . . "

Photographs of a younger Mr McGowan in navy whites and receiving the award are followed by snaps of his ministerial appointment and a public appearance with former premier Geoff Gallop.

Vision of present-day Mr McGowan playing backyard cricket with his son, reading to his daughter and making breakfast with his family gives way to him addressing the camera directly.

"We need a government that looks after ordinary people, that helps families with the cost of living and has a plan for housing and public transport," he tells viewers as he walks along Rockingham beachfront.

In step with a strategy of presenting himself as a positive alternative, Mr McGowan doesn't mention the Government but says WA needs one with "the right priorities".

Mr McGowan was given a commendation for bravery after reacting swiftly to a car accident he came across in 1995.

The West Australian

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