Saturday, February 21, 2009

Crash course in politics

I had one, continual complaint about candidate Obama; all prose, no details. Now I am beginning to see the wisdom in that strategy.

Meg Whitman, who delivered her California GOP coming out speech twenty minutes earlier, ran into the buzz saw of a very professional journalist. Dan Walters from the Sacramento Bee asked Ms. Whitman how she would have closed the $42 billion budget gap without raising taxes. Her answer was a generic, cut 10%of the staff at the state level. While this idea does have merit, the savings to the budget would fall far short of the 42 billion required. When Walters pointed this out, Meg quickly pointed to new reporter for a new question. Immediately the announcement of "last question" was given by someone from her staff, and away she went.

I like Meg Whitman, but having heard both Steve Poizner and Ms. Whitman handle reporters, Poizner clearly wins this early round. This isn't a Howard Dean scream, or anything close to a major campaign blunder, however, Whitman needs to avoid the mistakes of the McCain/Palin campaign. The handling of a new, inexperienced candidate is tricky; you can sequester your candidate and keep her away from the press until she comes up to speed, or get her out into smaller media markets to learn on the job.

I don't know the correct answer to this dilemma, but it's early, and there is plenty of time to improve her media skills. She will need to have a black-belt in political knowledge to win the election.

Speaking of Sarah Palin, I tried to get an interview with her, but her schedule was too rigid.

I did get this photo, I hope my wife isn't jealous.....

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