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Blog-Whistle Politics

May 17th, 2006 · 2 Comments

kosforlamont.jpgFellow Hit-and-Runner Dave Weigel notes a new campaign commercial for Democratic primary contender Ned Lamont that features a cameo by lefty überblogger Markos “Kos” Moulitsas. The commenters there are are largely incredulous: Kos may be a celeb among the small subset of the population that follows poltical blogs, but is the average TV viewer really expected to even know who he is, let alone recognize him on sight?

Now, I don’t know what the campaign’s intentions were, but my first thought was that it might be a clever kind of very narrowly tailored “dog whistle” politics. Some of the very engaged, very progressive voters recognize Kos (and point it out to their friends) and get the signal: “This is our guy, not like that sellout Lieberman!”

The problem with sending a signal like that to the progressives is that normally you’d have to worry about freaking out the moderates… but hey, no worries, they probably don’t know who Kos is, let alone what he looks like. Maybe a few very engaged conservatives do recognize the face of the enemy, but then, they don’t vote in Democratic primaries, and weren’t going to vote for a Dem in the general election under any circumstances.

Tags: Horse Race Politics



2 responses so far ↓

  • 1 pol // May 29, 2006 at 8:51 pm

    if this ad ever saw a TV screen, i’d be shocked and i’d bet that it would be a microscopic buy. this ad is narrowly targeted and designed to compel the kos kidz to pony up the $$$.

  • 2 Jon H // Jun 2, 2006 at 11:36 am

    I’d guess that many, possibly most, people who have read Daily Kos have no idea what he looks like.

    This would be especially true of the average Connecticut moderate.

    For people who don’t know anything about Kos, he may have some ‘utility’ in that he looks kinda ethnic and is supporting WASPy Ned Lamont.

    I saw the commercial on TV in Connecticut last weekend. It did seem kinda dorky yet genuine. On the other hand, it was a pleasant change from the usual campaign commercials.

    On the downside, Kos looks like he’s saying “Ned Lamont makes me feel like a leeetle gurl.”