(Lowell’s note: I’m promoting this because I think it shows what we’re up against this year. Anyone who underestimates Ken Cuccinelli or his team, including Chris LaCivita, or thinks we’re going to win easily just because Cuckoo is well…cuckoo, is delusional. So, Democrats, what are you doing to elect Terry McAuiffe and defeat Ken Cuccinelli? – promoted by lowkell)
by Paul Goldman
Let’s start with the great lyrics from ACDC’s super song “T.N.T.”
Women to the left of me, women to the right, I got no gun, I got no knife, but don’t you start no fight, I am dynamite.
With all due respect to the AG, the Cuccinellis have finally put the “A Team” on the field. Let’s give his strategy guy Chris LaCivita credit: he realizes a winner when he has one.
The K-man’s first ad, featuring a geeky image of him walking with his wife, then roughly 25 seconds of Teiro Cuccinelli talking into the camera, sometimes direct, sometimes over a montage of pictures, is right where Cuccinelli has to be to have ANY chance of being elected governor.
Guys, let’s face: We don’t matter in the 2013 campaign. The deciding vote is with the women, mostly in the suburbs. White guys, by and large, are Republican, end of story. Non-white guys, by and large, are Democratic, end of story. There is some potential movement here, but not enough to decide the governor’s race unless something unusual happens.
Meaning, for Cuccinelli to have any chance of winning, he has to close the gap among women. Hardly a revelation I would assume.
Enter, therefor, in ad #1: The Wife, The Mother, The Partner, The Middle Class Significant other. She is as good as it is going to get for the K-man among women. She is real, she is sincere, and she at least has an idea of how you win a campaign for Governor. My gut says: LaCivita may want to break new ground in Virginia by running Team Cuccinelli, Teiro and Ken, in that order I might add. That’s right: Team Cuccinelli, husband and wife Governor. It would be revolutionary.
LaCivita thinks he needs to do some measure of rehab of the Cuccinelli persona. Smart thinking. LaCivita knows that if he doesn’t get some traction among women, he is toast. Smart thinking again. Third, LaCivita decided he had to GO FIRST WITH A TV AD, beating Terry to the airwaves. Smart again. Fourth, Cuccinelli has less money than Terry, yet he is going first. That’s usually a little risky, but it either says they are confident the money will be there, or they had to take a risk by using precious resources first. I figure a little of both.
The Democratic-leaning women’s groups, media and their allies have done a very effective job in demonizing Cuccinelli. At the same time, the AG has given people a lot to work him over with in terms of politics. Meaning: it is all about the women. Therefore: If that is the case, why not run Team Cuccinelli for Governor?
Ironically, this has been a Dem concept. The GOP doesn’t go that route. George Allen made a big mistake last year, not running with his wife Susan, who is a far more appealing political figure at this point. That’s just the way it is guys: White Guys ain’t in no more.
This is the entertainment business. Nothing personal. All about selling tickets. Ma and Pa Cuccinelli? Why not?
Think back to 2009: McDonnell, facing a lot of the same political liabilities as Cuccinelli, brilliantly used his family and wife and daughters to overcome his liability on women’s issues. Having all those women around him really helped. Image is key. Cuccinelli doesn’t have the older daughters as did McDonnell. He has his wife. SO: Why not run as Team Cuccinelli?
The great irony of course is that Cuccinelli is running as the traditionalist, yet such a team concept is anything but relative to VA history. But this is why it might work for him, as opposed to say Terry. When you go against type, it is always higher risk, but higher reward. Team Cuccinelli is a lot stronger opponent than K-Man standing alone. And it looks like Chris LaCivita may have figured that out.