Make your opponent defend himself

Make your opponent defend himself

This Washington Post story by Chris Cillizza is worth reading if you're considering a run for office. 

We've all read about and have opinions on the Clinton email controversy. I'm not interested in debating the Clinton defense or what her opponents say here on the blog. But I do want to illustrate a point that might help you with your campaign. 

When a bad story breaks for your opponent, most candidates first instinct is to hope the scandal takes them out of the race immediately. Most of the time that does not happen. 

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Case study: want to steal your opponent's base voters?

Case study: want to steal your opponent's base voters?

Bobby Bright was elected as a Democrat in an R+16 (Republicans had a 16 point advantage) district in 2008. His campaign is an excellent case study in how to steal your opponent's base voters. 

Bright became the Congressman from Alabama's second district, split between a large part of Montgomery and the more conservative wire grass region in southeastern Alabama.

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Case study: Run, run again, then run again - one strategy for getting elected

Case study: Run, run again, then run again - one strategy for getting elected

Running every election season is not the strategy I recommend for getting elected. Candidates ought to have a specific reason they want to hold a particular office. For example, "I want to be Mayor because the city is in debt and I have the background and skills to get us out of debt." Or "I want to run for state representative because we have transportation problems I know how to fix them." 

When you run for different offices each year the implied reason for your candidacy is "I really want to be elected to something." That's not a campaign theme voters will get excited about. 

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The Winston Churchill guide to public speaking

The Winston Churchill guide to public speaking

Many of us have sat through bad political speeches. The candidate stands at the front of the room, eating up the opportunity to be the center of attention and mistaking an audience bored to tears with an audience moved by the content of his speech.

Winston Churchill was once that speaker. In its piece titled "The Winston Churchill Guide to Public Speaking," The Art of Manliness explains how Churchill transitioned from a speaker who bored audiences to one who inspired them. 

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Positioning yourself for a future run

Positioning yourself for a future run

Richard Nixon knew how to position himself for the the 1968 GOP nomination. He understood that the '66 midterm elections were going to be good one for Republicans. And so he made sure he was out stumping for GOP candidates, like he had done nearly every year since he was first elected to Congress.

But Nixon didn't choose the candidates he would help at random.

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