Tuesday, July 29, 2008

CAMPAIGN 2008 MAIL CALL: Early Primary Voting Season Has Begun

I’ll be blogging on the campaign literature I receive in my mailbox as the primary and general election seasons unfold. I’m a Republican who has voted in every state and federal election since I moved to Arizona in 1994. I do miss the odd local election but I’m what the professionals call a high propensity voter. Moreover, I’m a precinct committeeman for the Republican Party and 2nd Vice Chairman of Legislative District 20 Republicans. So, my mailbox should be hit hard over the next few weeks and months.

Without further delay, here’s what I got today:

Jeff Dial, Republican for the Arizona House of Representatives from LD20 – Jeff’s postcard is very well done and carries through with the design theme that his signs have through the district’s roadways. His sign design is the best in the race. It’s benefited by the ease at which one can display his 4-lettered name. He realizes that his first name is much less important than his last and his simple, clean design exudes competence and sobriety. Back to the mail piece… His top issues are "fighting illegal immigration," "improving education" and "strengthening our economy." He emphasizes his "conservative values" and has nice smiling photos of himself. The part I like the most is the big tagline: THE CHANGE ARIZONA NEEDS. It could easily be viewed as cynical or sarcastic. Either way, it shows a fearlessness uncommon in most cookie-cutter candidates. Grade: B+

Susan Bitter Smith, Republican for the United States House of Representatives from CD5 – I’m confused. Is Joe Arpaio running for this congressional seat? If I wanted Sheriff Joe as my congressman, I’d vote for him. But he’s not on the ballot. The Bitter Smith campaign sent a (roughly) 8/10 landscape-oriented fold-over booklet that tries to tie the candidate to two far more popular politicians, Arpaio and Ronald Reagan. Does it work? Speaking as someone unmoved by Joe Arpaio’s smoldering sexuality and Capraesque good cheer, I’m unimpressed. Grade: C-

David Schweikert, Republican for the United States House of Representatives from CD5 – The Schweikert campaign sent an 8/11 magazine-style 4-page mailer that boldly announces the candidate in word and picture on the "cover" (which is suitable for autographing and framing… sign right there David on the flag’s white strip to the left of your elbow…) The inside is less engaging. Too many words. The Bitter Smith piece had the right amount or fewer words than necessary. If you err on this count, err on the side of less rather than more. Your website is for details… which was nicely promoted on the excellent cover by the way. Take the "stuff" crammed on the back page and move it to the centerfold. Grade: B-

Mark Anderson, Republican for the United States House of Representatives from CD5 – "Representative" Mark Anderson has "a proven record of improving education" on his 6/11 glossy tri-fold brochure that is heavy on K-12 education. I see a nice blue-white-yellow banner in the inside that would have made a fine sign for the intersections of our district. Sadly, the drivers in CD5 are aesthetically assaulted by the Anderson campaign with a motley amalgam of conflicting sign designs. It’s one thing to recycle legislative signs from one election to the next but pick a theme and color scheme and stick to it. When you run for Congress, kitsch is goofy not frugal. The mail piece… wonderful if he were running for state legislature but not Congress. No one really cares what Arizona Speaker of the House Jim Weiers thinks of Mark Anderson. In fact, Jim Weiers’ name ID in CD5 must be in the single digits… even among Republicans. As for "Education Committee Vice Chairman" Rep. Andy Tobin’s endorsement… Grade: D

Proposition 200: Reform AZ Payday Loans – Wow, it’s July. Why am I getting a nice glossy 8/11 fold-over from my friends from the payday loan industry 98 days before the general election? Since the piece doesn’t show "Proposition 200" on it I doubt the average, or well-above average voter will long remember this mailer. It looks like it was printed weeks if not month ago. Its language has a clear defensive tone when it talks about "real" reform as if there’s another option. There was when this was printed apparently, but the anti-industry rival initiative failed weeks ago in its signature gathering effort. Grade: C

That’s it. With my early ballot due at the end of the week, I suspect I’ll be seeing many more specimens tomorrow.


Chris said...

Payday Loans are a lifesaver! When I am short on money it’s nice to be able to walk in and have the money I need within just a few minutes to last me until payday. Just about everyone experiences money shortages and it is nice to know I can get the money I need to keep me on my feet.

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