Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Indianapolis Mayoral Candidates Greg Ballard and Melina Kennedy Fail to Follow Textbook Campaign Strategy; Expect the Expectations Game in Viewing Kennedy's Results

The campaign textbook says that there are "windows" before the primary and general election during which voters are paying attention.  Those windows represent opportunities for candidates to connect with votes. For a candidate having no primary opposition or only token opposition, it is the opportunity to run slick, feel good pieces about the candidate to build up the positives before the inevitable negative stuff begins. 

Melina Kennedy
Surprisingly neither Ballard or Kennedy followed this strategy.  I could be wrong, but I'm not aware of any TV ads that were run by either candidate.  If there were some, they were apparently sporadic at best.  Investing in some TV spots during the uncluttered primary window would have been smart politics.

Over at Washington Street Politics, you see the inevitable Republican spin about the Democratic race. WSP suggests that if Kennedy does not get 85% of the primary vote, she doesn't have the solid support of Democrats and has thus failed.   Of course that's a ridiculously high figure that she has no chance of meeting against any two candidates, much less a previous at-large councilor and the son of a former member of Congress.  A realistic expectation is one that is about 60%.  Neither Ron Gibson or Sam Carson ran a very aggressive campaign.  Still the names alone are going to attract a lot of votes.

Election night expect that news reporters will go to Marion County GOP Chairman Kyle Walker and the Ballard campaign and their spin will be that Kennedy failed because she didn't get at least 85% of her own party's vote.  Complete nonsense.

1 comment:

Cato said...

For these boring primaries, don't expect to see much election coverage.