Sunday, October 09, 2011

Kennedy Versus Ballard Ads

We've got about a month more of watching these endless number of campaign ads being run by the campaigns of Mayor Greg Ballard and his Democratic opponent, Melina Kennedy in the Indianapolis mayor's race, and I've had my fill of them already. I will say that from a stylistic standpoint, Ballard's ads are by far more professional and effective than the ones Kennedy is airing. Whoever is doing her media campaign should be fired because her ads are among the worst I've seen. Her negative ads, in particular, attacking Ballard's record are so poorly done they are actually counter-productive. If you're going to run a negative ad, at least produce one that is catchy and makes a real impression on the voter. I've always believed the most effective negative attack against an incumbent are those using his or her own words against them. Run a clip of the candidate saying one thing at one point and then saying something later that is totally contradictory of the earlier position, or run a clip of the candidate making a claim in his own words and then contrast that with the actual facts that vary from the candidate's claim. Just listening to a faceless person narrating facts with still picture images, particularly when the narrator has a forgetful-sounding voice, is a total waste of air time and money.


Paul K. Ogden said...

I think her positive ads have been good, but I agree that her "negative ads" (not wild about that term) have not been that good. Given the amount of ammunition Ballard has given her, I don't know why she is not using it. There is so much to hit Ballard on. Ballard is being allowed too much leeway to claim the highground on such issues as taxes, governmeent spending and public safety, issues which she has ample ammunition to completely discredit him on.

I don't agree though that Ballard's ads have been good. The ads lack any coherent theme and the quick video cuts are dizzying and not going to go over well with middle age and older voters. The failure to use a professional announcer on many of them too is a mistake.

But in the end if she's not going to aggessively go after his record with hard hitting negative spots, I think there is a chance Ballard may actually win. I think he's the underdog, but as each day passes and the negative attacks are not coming, the odds of his re-election go up.

I just don't understand why Kennedy isn't being more aggressive. Perhaps the polls are already in her favor. That's the only thing I can think of.

Citizen Kane said...

I've talked to several people who are basically die-hard Democrats who are confused by her lack of aggressiveness in gutting Ballard, starting with his blowhole.