AR-02: BHR Wonders…

26 Apr

Can you think of another Democratic candidate in recent memory who has been able to squander such a huge built-in advantage the way AR-02 candidate David Boling has? With his years of experience working for our beloved outgoing congressman Vic Snyder–complete with access to Snyder’s address book, consulting, and fundraising outlets–you would think Mr. Boling’s campaign would have little problem hanging with the likes of the well-known Speaker Wills and Senator Elliott. That has clearly not been the case.

In fact, the most recent polling by Talk Business taken a little over two weeks ago showed Boling not only trailing those two long-assumed frontrunners, but actually trailing candidate Patrick Kennedy, despite out fundraising Kennedy by a whopping $250,000 to $5,000. This can be attributed solely to the fact that Boling’s campaign cannot find an identity in this race. Boling’s operatives attempted to take an assumed frontrunner approach like Wills and Elliott (which hasn’t worked; nobody outside of political circles knows who David Boling is), and completely failed to get out in front with new media in order to engage progressives and the local blogosphere, which Kennedy’s camp did for next-to-nothing moneywise by promoting the candidate online and touting “extensive” policy ideas that the other candidates lacked. (Though we later saw those policies twiddled down to be far less “extensive” following an alleged brouhaha between campaign staff members and outside consultants that later left the campaign).

Still, it doesn’t take a consulting genius to see that Boling has missed an opportunity that likely cannot be made up in the three weeks leading to the primary. Having the financial resources and personal connections to compete with better-known candidates in traditional campaign outlets and making use of new media outlets to tout specific differences and policy approaches between Boling and his opponents (while also building on the Snyder legacy) could have certainly led to success. At the very least, that kind of strategy would have put him position for a run-off election v. Wills or Elliott. Though clearly experienced at being involved in successful campaigns, BHR wonders what, exactly, Boling’s “best strategists in the business”–Chris Kell and Debbie Willhite–have been doing over at headquarters in the past couple of months. Why hasn’t the candidate been more outspoken as being the candidate to continue Vic Snyder’s work for Arkansas and our country? Why haven’t we been able to see more specific policy ideas or a passion to stand up for progressive ideals? Why does his website’s “In the News” segment show his February 4 announcement to run for the AR-02 seat as Boling’s last newsmaking headline? Why haven’t we seen more of the candidate on television, radio, and the web?

Oh yeah, maybe this is why:

Ouch. Even the famous Clinton thumb-press move was awkward. Perhaps less is more with this fella?

Kidding aside, this race has been difficult to have a clear understanding about from a progressive’s point of view. We’re led to believe that Wills may be the only shot at keeping Tim Griffin’s spite out of D.C. We have a true progressive–Joyce Elliott–but wonder how she’ll fare with district voters outside of the metro area. There’s that spunked Kennedy kid who has at least showed a little vigor by shooting from the hip and has tried to use new media effectively, but he is not very credible with his total lack of lawmaking/real world (not MTV’s version) experience. And that is before one even addresses these whispers of possible inappropriate use of email lists and disgruntled campaign workers, which are usually reserved for “career politicians” who have at least taken a few years in the game before conjuring up images of shady dealings. John Adams, meanwhile, has shown an adept ability to use new media far more effectively than Kennedy, as well as the ability to raise a decent amount of funds for the campaign, but still seems unable to get the media attention he needs. However, Adams must realize his place to score is in the opening debate coming soon, so BHR will be keeping its eye out for him to make a splash and get in this thing.

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2 Responses to “AR-02: BHR Wonders…”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. AR-02: BHR Backs John Adams | Blue Hog Report: Arkansas's Source for Progressive Politics - May 7, 2010

    […] can we actively tout Mr. Missed Opportunity (David Boling), or the arrogant, inexperienced, and misguided priorities of Patrick Kennedy.  As […]

    Like

  2. AR-02: BHR Backs John Adams | Blue Hog Report: Arkansas's Source for Progressive Politics - May 7, 2010

    […] can we actively tout Mr. Missed Opportunity (David Boling), or the arrogant, inexperienced, and misguided priorities of Patrick Kennedy.  As […]

    Like

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