We're now just 18 months away from election day which might seem like an eternity to voters, but an excruciatingly short amount of time to those running political campaigns. President Obama will be a formidable opponent in 2012, but he certainly can be beaten. There are four things an opposing candidate must do in order to defeat him:
1. GATHER RESOURCES - You will need both financial and human resources, lots of each. In terms of money, you will need more than Obama can generate. Unlike the president, who has the luxury of having the press on his side, you will need to buy your media coverage. This means your campaign will be more expensive as you do not want to run out of cash in the waning days before the election. In terms of human resources, you will need a dedicated team of volunteers and workers in every state and municipality across the country. Can't get enough resources, either one or the other? Don't bother running.
2. ORGANIZATION - You will need to assemble an effective infrastructure of people and communications. Although there will be a need to acclimate to the nuances of the locale, the organization must be able to move as a single organism. This means not only efficient and secured communications, but also some rather sophisticated systems to monitor the performance of your organization.
3. MANAGEMENT - Although you will need a centralized group of people to administer your campaign, you must be ready to personally jump in and make decisions. Do not leave the running of your operation to just your staff, be actively involved. After all, if you become president, you will have to do likewise in office.
4. STRATEGY - It will be necessary to develop "mind share" in the general public. You must be able to show the status quo is no longer tolerable, and demonstrate you can rectify the problems. In other words, you must push not only the president's weaknesses, but your strengths as well. Fortunately, the president has made enough mistakes which has caused the country to become disgruntled with his performance, but you must go further in the media and in personal appearances to foster an image of his incompetency. Be adamant and unapologetic, that it is time to reverse course from his policies. You must not only discredit him, but you must attack his ideology and anyone subscribing to it, particularly the cronies in his administration and those in the Congress seeking reelection. You must apply this full court press early in the campaign in order to convince the public you are correct. Repetitive slogans and talking points told excessively leaves impressions in the minds of people. Never let the president elude his record.
If this all sounds familiar, it should, it comes from Obama's 2008 play book. His attacks on George W. Bush were legendary and linking him to the Republican party caused John McCain to be seen as just another Bush wannabe simply through guilt by association. The difference now is the president will no longer be attacking the status quo as much as he will be defending it. Blaming Bush will cause him to lose points in the polls. The status quo is his Achilles Heel. Use it to the same degree he did in 2008.
In contrast, the subjects you must embrace include the economy, immigration, moral values, patriotism, and the Constitution. You must also make voters understand some hard decisions will have to be made in order for the country to survive. If they recognize the severity of the problem, they will support you.
You must also come up with a way to appeal to the youth of the country. Don't look for MTV or SNL to help you. Instead, your volunteers must stay focused on school boards and officials and hold them responsible for the actions of teachers and questionable curriculum presented in school. Get your volunteers active at the grassroots level.
It should come as no surprise to learn the general media is your enemy and is working to undermine your election. Be forthright, honest and direct with them, but do not allow them to misrepresent a policy or position you have taken. Hold them accountable for any inaccurate reporting of your position, and publish it on the Internet for all to read. Never play defense with the press or your opponent, take the offense. Whoever is forced to play defense in the next election will undoubtedly lose.
It is anyone's guess as to who the Republican candidate will be at this stage of the game. One thing is for certain, whoever the media lampoons the most, are the people the Democrats are most frightened of. Right now it is Donald Trump and Michele Bachmann, which probably wouldn't be a bad ticket.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M. Bryce & Associates (MBA) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Copyright © 2011 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.