The National:

ONE of the keys to success in politics in keeping yourself in the public eye.

This week, David Mundell gave a masterclass in the practice.

With the media’s attention focused on the Tory leadership race, the Scottish Secretary found the perfect way to insert himself into the news cycle.

Key to the strategy is adopt a position that will grab people’s attention – a completely contradictory one, for example.

WATCH: David Mundell squirms when asked about old Boris Johnson quote

Asked by ITV Borders if he would serve in a cabinet led by Johnson, Mundell claimed: “I’ve never said that I wouldn’t serve under a Boris Johnson government.”

That’ll do it.

Remember, in December last year Mundell told the BBC: “Given my views about Mr Johnson, which are well known, that would be extremely difficult.

“Mr Johnson and I don’t agree on a whole range of issues and I don’t see myself being able to serve in that way.”

And so for the next 58 seconds, the Scottish Secretary stuck to his guns, despite repeated reminders from the interviewer that he was contradicting himself.

It made for a truly excruciating watch – exactly the kind of stuff that’ll catch people’s attention.

Judging by the response on Twitter, Mundell did just that.

MP Mhairi Black expressed solidarity with him, recalling having to face a similar dilemma.

Scottish football pundit Michael Stewart put it a bit more bluntly.

National columnist Andrew Tickell was full of praise for the “Tory triangulation strategy”.

Independence campaigner Doug Daniel did Mundell the honour of comparing him to Ruth Davidson.

SNP politician Paul Monaghan got to grips with the Scottish Secretary’s new position.

Councillor Elena Whitham commented on his political flexibility.

The tributes didn’t end there …