There's been some stuff written about Allan Kittleman's TV ads that have debuted this week, the first ads of the 2014 County Executive campaign. Sparty wrote a post that you can see by clicking here, and Amanda Yeager wrote this article.
My thoughts? Never thought you'd ask.
I think this is straight out of the Kittleman playbook. Allan's campaigns have always portrayed him as the Regular Joe who just wants less government and wants people to have more of the money they earn. At it's best, that portrayal is very compelling and you can't help but admire the guy. At it's worst, the portrayal comes across as more than a bit condescending.
But that's what he's telling we the people in these ads. Hey, I'm Allan, I'm a Regular Joe, and these people who are Democrats and Independents support me. And the ad, incidentally, doesn't exactly emblazon the fact that Allan is a Republican. If its mentioned it's subtle. Instead, it's mentioned that he's a proven, independent leader, which is his campaign's slogan.
But to have that hit home, Allan's going to have to lean upon more than his support for marriage equality, which is a tune he has been playing, in my opinion, way too much lately. And he's going to have to do more than be a good guy who has conservative values and wants to save people money. He's going to have to come up with innovative solutions to problems local government faces that are different than those of his opponent. And I'm not sure the "yellow pages" approach to government that he's espoused in past campaigns is going to work. Which means that if it's a service that one can find in the yellow pages, that government shouldn't be providing it.
Sparty says that Allan's flushing cash. I'm not totally sure I agree. I think spending money on TV ads this early is a risky proposition, but I think that what the Kittleman campaign is doing is framing the candidate. It's risky, but it's a risk Allan as taken before and is comfortable in taking. And in fact, looking at the voter registration numbers, it's the risk he has to take.
When will Watson hit the Waves? Damned if I know. But when she does I will be here, God willing, with commentary and more thoughts!
July 25 is National Threading the Needle Day! OK then.
And let's be careful out there.