09 September 2006

Three Candidates?

One thing that's surprised me about the gubernatorial race so far is that the media (and, by that, I mean ADN and KTUU) are clearly defining this as a three-way race. Andrew Halcro appears to get covered in every article about the race, including this one about the NEA's decision not to endorse a particular candidate.

I was thinking about this because I'm putting together a series of call-in shows with the gubernatorial candidates and we want back and forth and whether or not to call Halcro. Ultimately we did and will do a show with him (though I'm really unsure what kind of calls we'll get) but it was only because ADN was making him seem like a legitimate candidate.

I'm sure Andrew loves the attention but is it deserved? According to that Dittman poll I saw someplace, he's only at 3 per cent of the vote. I don't like making decisions based on poll results but it does strike me as a bit worrisome for the Halcro/Lancaster campaign. Why should we treat Halcro as any different than any of the other non-major party candidates?

Here's the question: how did Halcro make this happen? When I interviewed him in April, he came off as a guy who thinks seriously about policy and isn't always interested in giving platitude-filled soundbites for answers. I'd say that endears him to reporters who are tired of hearing the same thing over and again. But is it enough to earn him all this coverage?

UPDATE: The ADN also has an article about the NEA's non-endorsement, which also gives play to Halcro. But here's the best part:

Palin wrote that both the old retirement system and a 401(k)-type retirement system have their benefits, and should be studied to decide if a better, third approach could combine the two.
For a candidate who's in danger of being labelled as lacking in firm positions on a variety of issues, it strikes me that this isn't the most hopeful of sentences, particularly when it's in the context of a story that has fairly firm policy ideas from Halcro and Knowles.

Saying you're going to be the first "PTA Mom" to be governor doesn't seem like such a solid campaign strategy. But then again, how many people care about policy when they decide who to vote for?

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