TV ads

Ethnic Outreach From Conservatives, Done The Right Way

I want my party to do this! From Tim Mak at FrumForum:

In the ongoing Canadian election campaign, we’re seeing a lot of examples for ethnic outreach done right – especially with the micro-targeted campaign ads that the Conservative Party has recently released in minority languages like Mandarin and Cantonese and Punjabi ...

In this election, we now have Alice, Tim, Harry and Nina – all minorities who are Conservative Party politicians, speaking in their native language to members of their ethnic group

The ads are particularly well done. This one was done by Canadian Conservative Member of Parliament, Dr. Alice Wong, speaking to her constituents in Cantonese:

And here's an English-language version from Canadian Conservative MP Nina Grewal:

Why are these ads powerful? Because they celebrate diversity without exploiting it. I have made the case before than some who profess to be "progressives" often use ethnicity as a way to divide and drive voters. These ads and this outreach program clearly serve to celebrate Canadian ethnic diversity while also discussing shared values. In fact, the second ad above makes the point that "things haven't always been fair for" ethnic minorities, yet progress it being made and that it's time to "vote our values."

Both major parties in America have now had extensive experience in Hispanic-language ads. But when will Republicans celebrate our diversity of elected officials and candidates in a way that can serve as outreach tools to Americans of all backgrounds? Will we soon watch TV ads, hear radio spots and see pamphlets in Mandarin, Korean, Farsi, etc.?

Bottom line: the right kind of creativity and strategic thinking can communicate shared conservative values to different ethnic, religious and cultural communities.

CT 5: Dem Congressman Chris Murphy pulls saccharin, goes for vinegar

A few days ago , I pointed out how Democrat Chris Murphy, who received $500,000 in campaign funds from financial firms as a member of the Financial Services Committee, and then rewarded his donors by supporting the $700 Billion Wall Street Bailout, was responding to the charge with a cloying saccharin laden ad

Well, although I am not privy to Murphy's polls, the saccharin failed. Tonight he is up with a new attack ad trying to link his opponent to President Bush.

I suppose there must be some form of moral equivalence here for Murphy.  What's wrong in his mind is a Republican president raising money for a Republican candidate. What's not wrong is a member of the Financial Services Committee following in Chris Dodd's footsteps by shaking down the firms he regulates.

I note that Murphy makes no link to Obama in his ad, just the usual MSM liberal incumbent endorsements. And that as an incumbent with a 2/1 funding advantage in a Blue State he needs to attack his opponent. To quote L.P. Berra, "sometimes you learn a lot just watching"

I did a drive to the other end of CT 5 this afternoon and there is a lot of Cappiello visibility in the Danbury area. This race may be headed back to the radar screen. 

Nothing to Lose

Has the McCain campaign considered that the time to change their ad strategy is NOW, and only because two weeks ago is no longer an option?

In the last month, McCain's favorability rating has dropped 6 points, from 56.4 to 50.1, and Obama's favorability has increased, from 55.3 to 57.4, according to the RCP polling average.  The Obama-focused campaign is not working.

Now Election Politics 101 dictates that when you're down and your opponent is hovering at 50% in electoral polls, it's time to enlighten voters to the negative aspects of your opponent, commonly known as "negative" ads.  The McCain camp followed this rule to a tee.  And in this case, it did not work. 

They can blame the media and say it's because the media has a double standard for the two campaigns, and they do.  They can probably blame the failed negative ad strategy on other factors as well.  But the bottom line is it has not worked, and it's time to change course.

Rather than set their sights on Obama's unfavorables, how about playing to their strengths? Remember the McCain bio videos -- those that recount his experience as a war hero, a man who suffered for the sake of his country and his country men and women?  What happened to the Country First theme dominating the Convention?

And we never saw ads that tout McCain's independent, pragmatic record in the Senate.

No scramble necessary to concoct concepts, use McCain himself, at his best.  There's a reason this guy was popular -- at times.

Perhaps there is concern about shirking the playbook and going back up with McCain-centered ads with 20 days left to play.  Yet, the reasons for going positive at this point grossly outweigh any conceivable risk:

1) McCain may not win, but I'm sure he would prefer for it to be close rather than get trounced by a Senate newbie like Obama.

2) McCain may not win, but he doesn't want to be responsible for a Democratic filibuster-proof majority in the Senate, and a Democratic deluge in the House.

3) McCain may not win, but he can go out on a positive note and preserve his pride and his image.

4) McCain may not win, but he's not winning anyway, and he has nothing to lose.

While McCain's chances of winning are slim and getting slimmer every day, his campaign owes it to themselves, their supporters, and the Republican Party ... and John McCain ... to go back to basics.

Is Obama's Spending Lead Moving the Polls?

Based on the latest data from the Wisconsin Advertising Project, Obama's spending advantage is starting to come into play. In the week from September 28 to October 4, Obama-Biden spent $16.2 million on ads in 15 swing states to McCain-Palin and the RNC's $9.5 million.

Is this spending making a difference? The answer is a qualified yes.

To figure out the impact of Obama's TV ad spending edge in various states, I updated this spreadsheet to aggregate a number of data points, including RCP averages from various points in the race, 2004 results, and aggregate ad spending as well as ad spending per voter per week.

In states where Obama has an above average spending advantages (more than 1.7 to 1), his RCP average lead has moved up 3.61 percent versus in 2.44 percent in states where the candidates were more stalemated in terms of ad spending. A similar shift of about 1.2 points was found when comparing these polling averages to July 1 or the first date we had polling for a state, when ad spending was a fraction of what it is today. 

With 15 states, this kind of analysis is plagued by a small-n factor in which one state can throw the calculus off dramatically. It's also worth pointing out that state-specific RCP averages can be less reliable than their national counterparts.

In these cases, I find it useful to build typologies state by state. Overall, I found 5 states (Florida, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Carolina, and Virginia) in which a massive Obama spending edge correlated with an above-average shift to Obama since September 28, versus one state that defied this pattern (Indiana). Remove Indiana and the ad spending effect rises to 1.6 points.

AK-SEN Update: Begich Hypocrisy on Energy Production

The Senate race in Alaska is still alive. Even with Ted Stevens on trial starting this week, he only trails Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich by 3.7% according to the latest RCP average.

Essentially, the race comes down to the outcome of the trial: Stevens acquitted = win, Stevens convicted = loss. In a future post, I will talk about why I, as a conservative and an Alaskan, still support Ted Stevens. I know there are many here who aren't fans of him, but I do intend on making the case for why he's much better than the alternative this November. So let me spend some time on his opponent: Mark Begich.

The story on Begich is simple: he'll say anything to get elected. (I've posted before on how he stretches his record as mayor, but the NRSC and the Alaska Republican Party have set that record straight.) Begich says he supports drilling in ANWR and expanding refining capacity in the following ad ...

But Begich not only keeps on taking money from Hollywood and New York liberals that oppose any sort of drilling. He's taken money from potential Senate colleagues that think the same, including PAC dollars from Harry Reid, Chuck Schumer, Russ Feingold, Dick Durbin, John Kerry, and Barbara Boxer. But it doesn't stop there. Alaska Conversation Voters (ACV), a very powerful anti-drilling-in-ANWR extremist environmentalist grassroots organization, has started running ads against Ted Stevens ...

Begich has not called for these ads to be pulled, and didn't call on the DSCC to pull their presumptuous ads about Stevens' trial, even though Alaska broadcast stations removed them because of their innacuracy. One thing to note about Alaska Conservation Voters is the amount of incredible amount power they have with Democratic candidates in Alaska. It seems like an oxymoron that a rabidly anti-drilling-in-ANWR group would have so much influence in Alaska, but they essentially run the ground operation for Democratic candidates, most of whom are on the record in support of more exploration and production in Alaska. Whose side is Begich really on?

One of the things I would have liked to see vulnerable House Republican incumbents do during the #dontGo movement last month is to pressure their Democratic opponents to push Pelosi for an energy vote. If I were a vulnerable GOP incumbent from Alaska, I would sent out a press release inviting my pro-drilling Democratic opponent to work in my office to convince Democrats this session for a vote, since energy is one of the top issues this election.

With an issue like energy production, we have to expose hypocritical Democrats like Mark Begich, and tell them to either stop taking extremist environmental money or admit that they will just cave into the anti-energy production lobby if they get elected.

AK-AL Update: Why Sean Parnell Lost

The final numbers are in. Congressman Don Young has won the highest turnout primary (40.6%) in Alaska's history by 304 votes. Because the margin is less than 0.5%, Sean Parnell was afforded the right to a state-funded recount. Instead, the lieutenant governor conceded today and said in a statement that because his campaign was based on "treating taxpayer dollars with more respect and greater care," the margin does not justify "an expenditure of taxpayer funds." Here's exactly how close it was:

  • LEDOUX, Gabrielle: 9901 votes - 9.34%
  • PARNELL, Sean: 47891 votes - 45.19%
  • YOUNG, Don: 48195 votes - 45.47%

While I still won't disclose who I voted for because of my previous position within the Alaska Republican Party, I do know there are a lot of readers and writers on The Next Right that were fans and supporters of Sean Parnell. I've made some of the following points before, but they need to be made again in order to give a full analysis of why I believe Sean Parnell lost. And, yes, like a fellow Alaskan political operative repeated to me today, "Don didn't win. Sean lost."

Mac counterattack: New ad links Obama to Palin smears

In the "we're not gonna take it "department, the McCain-Palin campaign has launched a new TV countering the tidal surge of dreck the Nutroots,  the MSM and the Obama camp have poured at Governor Palin


I'm sure that Obama himself will claim this ad inaccurately associates him with every vile innuendo thrown at Ms. Palin, but:

a) those people launching the smears were the folks you catered to so as to win the nomination. Since now you like old style rural phrases, you gotta dance with the girl ya brung, Barack

b) If you didn;t want to be associated with a smear campaign, sending 30 operatives to Anchorage to dig dirt is not how one avoids association with said smear campaign

I also love the use of wolves as a symbol of a predator. It is very reminiscent of what may have been the most effective political ad since "Daisy", the 1984 "Bear" ad for Reagan.



The best way to exploit the "many mansions" flap

In thinking about the brouhaha over the McCain gaffe on "how many houses"I was reminded of a line from one of my favorite actors, Clint Eastwood

Go to fullsize image

" In all the excitement I guess I lost count. Did I fire five shots, or did I fire six?"

I believe Eastwood is supporting McCain

How about Eastwood doing this for an ad.

"Someone asked my friend  John McCain about how many houses he and his wife owned. And in all the excitement of a presidential campaign I guess he lost count on whether it was six houses , or seven.

But there's one thing for sure. At this critical time for America, we should all feel lucky we have a man with the character, the courage and the decency of John McCain.

This November. make my day. Elect John McCain our President"      


What Would You Do With $96M in 80 Days?

John McCain and the RNC reported that they had $96 million of cash-on-hand from the beginning of August, which is somewhat impressive. WIth $84 million coming in from public financing, Rick Davis gave the AP some details on the media budget for the rest of the campaign:

"McCain's overall advertising budget for August is expected to exceed $20 million, and, by the convention in early September, Davis said McCain is on track to spend some $60 million on TV expenditures."

"Davis put the budget for September, October and the first few days of November at more than $100 million — including the taxpayer money and accounts the RNC shares with the campaign — and [Davis] said: 'We will start the general election fully flush.'"

But will TV ads really make or break the election this year? I questioned that a couple months ago, as did Steven Stark of the Boston Globe.

Gold Medal for Mac?

Evidently the MSM did not see fit to inform the public that Barack Obama is not the only candidate who is going to advertise during the Olympics. Guess it would spoil the "inevitability" meme that they have been peddling. So I had to see this in a trade journal 


McCain Bests Obama With Competitive NBC Olympic Ad Buy

The McCain ad buy was made in recent days and became public Aug. 5

Aug 5, 2008

The presidential campaign of Republican candidate John McCain, not wanting to be outdone by rival Democratic candidate Barack Obama, has made a $6 million advertising buy on NBC Universal’s Olympic coverage which begins this Friday night (Aug. 8).

The McCain campaign buy comes several weeks after the Obama campaign made a $5 million Olympic ad buy.

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