Thursday, April 17, 2008

3 points from a noted political consultant...

Today’s entry may not directly correlate to Public Relations, but it is definitely prevalent and relative in concerns with general politics, and especially with the enthusiastic hype over the upcoming presidential primaries in Pennsylvania.

Just this morning, in my American Political Science class, we had the opportunity to hear from a special guest speaker, Mr. Neil Oxman. Oxman is a consultant at one of the nation’s leading political media consulting firms, The Campaign Group, Inc., based in Philadelphia. The firm has won more than 90% of its campaigns and he is also highly recognized as one of the nation’s top democratic political consultants. He has worked with an extraordinary list of candidates, including Pennsylvania’s present Governor Ed Rendell and Philadelphia’s Mayor Michael Nutter. Both campaigns were awarded by the American Association of Political Consultants and the firm was recognized for “best overall television campaign for any office in America in 2007” for Mayor Michael Nutter and as “one of the three best overall media campaigns for any political office in 2002” for Governor Ed Rendell.

The three most important things Oxman stressed during his lecture, regarding a successful candidate, were as follows:

1.) Define Yourself
  • You must define yourself before anyone else does. Determine who you are and how you want to be perceived by the public.
2.) Define Your Opponents
  • Distinguish who your opponents are and recognize what they stand for.
3.) Define the Stakes (of the Election)
  • Establish what issues mean the most; center the election around what you want and what is important to the public.

Oxman has had years of experience with various political campaigns, ranging from presidential primaries, running for senator, state representatives, governor, mayor and more. However, he says it always comes down to the three main points stated above.

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