Lynch Stirs
Governor John Lynch received the political equivalent of a sucker punch this week with the unveiling of a new attack ad directed against him by the out-of-state Defense of Marriage Group. I have already seen the ad several times on television, and it is one nasty, negative piece of work. Until now, Lynch has been going about his business without acknowledging that there is even an election approaching in little more than six months, but this ad has finally forced him to engage. Lynch responded in his familiar non-politician, politician sort of way by smartly recasting the ad as an attack on New Hampshire.
I have written previously about the idea that citizens of the Granite State don’t appreciate outside groups interfering in their local politics, and Lynch sought to capitalize on this sentiment. This may be true, but as I’ve also noted, new technology, changes in campaign finance regulations, and the advent of the 24-hour cable news cycle, have contributed to the new reality that all politics is national. We saw this firsthand with the involvement of outside groups in the U.S. Senate race between Jeanne Shaheen and John E. Sununu in 2008, and the attention from well-funded outside groups could be even more intense this time around. Perhaps opponents believe that the governor’s recent lower poll numbers make him vulnerable. Even so, that Lynch is no longer immune from this kind of hardball says a lot about just how contentious the political environment has become.


Posted On: 04-16-2010 10:54:34 by Jim Splaine
Great observations, Dean. There is a point in politics and the public conscience when "technique" becomes an issue. Out-of-state groups spending on New Hampshire campaigns, whether it's an anti-gay organization, or even the DNC or RNC, can backfire. We saw that with the Craig/Shea-Porter primary race in 2006. With the U.S. Supreme Court opening the spending floodgates for corporations, I think this year and in the future more voters than ever will be attentive to the way flashy, fancy, fluffy advertising by questionable interests try to buy their votes. You can't fool all the people all the time. Of course, that might be the optimism in me showing through, but I'm hopeful such techniques won't work.

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