Coffee & Links: Know When To Stop Talking

Like most politicos, I followed the shutdown with a lot of interest. Carl Cannon at RealClearPolitics analyzes the politics of the shutdown here

For those running or considering running for public office, there are a few takeaways worth considering. Both sides missed a golden opportunity:

1) Republicans - As Cannon points out, the GOP has been claiming Obamacare will be a disaster from the start. And as it was rolled out - and ran into major problems - the Republicans allowed themselves to share blame for government incompetence/misconduct by pushing for changes in the law during the shutdown, rather than sitting back and letting the people judge Obamacare for themselves.

I've seen this often. When your opponent is melting down, it's hard not to pile on. But often its far better to take a step back, stop talking, and let your opponent twist in the wind.

2) Obama - The President also missed his own golden opportunity during the shutdown. He and his advisers knew the website - and thus Obamacare - was not ready to be rolled out. Republicans demanded that it be delayed. Why not just capitulate, take that time to test and improve the site, then blame the GOP for the delay? Obama needed a delay anyway. 

An achilles heel of many who are drawn to politics is the necessity to be the alpha male - the refusal to back down. My bet is that Obama knew he could buy himself some time to get the site working with that delay, but couldn't stomach letting his GOP counterparts have a win. Humility and patience are vastly underrated qualities in politics.  

In Other News:  

There's voting tomorrow! It's Election Day across the nation. If you're considering a run for public office in 2014 for the first time, few things are as valuable as a test run. Consider volunteering for the Get-Out-The-Vote effort of your favorite local candidate. I've managed a number of GOTV efforts, and will still be volunteering in Cincinnati to get more practice. It'll likely be your last opportunity for a live run through before the real thing - don't pass up a chance to learn from another candidate's operation. [If you don't know who to contact, email me at and I'll help you find a local campaign].

If you would like to get more campaign tips, you can check out "Running for Officemagazine, subscribe to the blog or connect with me on twitter or LinkedInYou can also get an campaign tips emailed to you once a week by signing up to to the right of this post.