This document confirms every worst suspicion that people tend to have about campaigns.
Mark Leibovich, New York Times Magazine
Thanks to Evergreene Digest reader Wayne Hornicek for this contribution.
August 12, 2014 | Last month, Eliana Johnson of National Review gained access to a 144-page memo that was prepared by a team of political strategists working for the senate campaign of Michelle Nunn, the Georgia Democrat. Nunn, the daughter of Sam Nunn, the state’s longtime senator, is running against David Perdue, a Republican, to succeed Saxby Chambliss, who is retiring. While I am obviously not smart enough to be a “political strategist” — otherwise I would be paid more — it strikes me as advisable to keep a document like this under wraps, especially when it is so brutally self-critical in places (saying, among other things, that voters might dismiss Michelle Nunn as being a “lightweight,” “too liberal” and “not a ‘real’ Georgian”). Already the document has become fodder for Twitter ridicule and at least one attack ad.
But one campaign’s embarrassment can also yield a windfall of public edification. And the Nunn memo, as it has come to be known in political wiseguy circles, offers a glimpse into the calculations and absurdities that drive modern campaigns. The paper contains no campaign-killing outrages or instances of great malpractice — except that the press got hold of it, and as we learn from the “press plan” section of the memo, “many reporters see their job as getting the candidate to ‘reveal’ what their ‘true’ inclinations” are. And now we have those inclinations in all their glory.
Mark Leibovich, author of “This Town,” is the the New York Times Magazine’s chief national correspondent.
Full story …