Saturday, September 11, 2010

P.O. Box 13: 'A great campaign' ending (Part 5)

The latest part of our look at campaign mailers in the 13th Worcester House District race. Also see Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

As you'll recall, we received solid mailers from each of the front-runners on Thursday. Two of them sent more the next day. Here's what we received Friday and Saturday, Sept. 10-11.

Gina DiBaro
"Have You Heard?"
Gina DiBaro checks in for the first time this month with four testimonials -- half of them from Paxton (!), all from "regular people" and not government or political officials. That's either a good thing or a bad thing. The reverse (not pictured) says DiBaro will bring "a New Voice, New Vision and New Results ... my priorities are job creation, public safety and fiscal responsibility. It is time for Full Time Representation!" Not sure I like the capitalization, but I'm definitely detecting an attack on state Rep. Robert Spellane, who's leaving this seat. That would make this the first mailer (or the first since we started keeping track) to mention Spellane, even in a veiled fashion.

John Mahoney
"You're Getting Soaked"
Say what you will about Joff Smith's "silhouette" mailer, but this is the first entirely negative mailer of the campaign: the only mention of its sender, John Mahoney, is in the return address. In a mailer that complains about negative attacks, the text begins with: "Under Joff Smith's failed leadership ..." (the reverse, aside from address information, shows a man being drenched, with the legend: "Feel like you're being soaked? You are.").

Another question: Since all of Worcester's woes are attributable to Smith's "leadership," is Mahoney conceding that Smith is a leader on the council? One attack that does hit home: Mahoney mentions Smith's vote to grant city councilors a pay raise.

Joff Smith
"My Name is Joff"
With a bare minimum of decoration, Joff Smith rehashes his résumé in a letter to voters. Do voters see an inconsistency in his arguments? "Government has neglected taxpayers ... can't fix problems by sending political insiders" ... but ... "I am the only candidate with experience governing through a fiscal crisis." So Smith, the only current elected official, is not a political insider? Overall, though, this mailer is a winner. He gets his message across and cites some specific votes and actions.

John Mahoney
"A Great Campaign"
The only mailer to arrive Saturday, and though John Mahoney has my full attention, he doesn't have much to say. The reverse (not pictured) is simply "John Mahoney - State Representative - September 14" in huge letters and a photo of him with his son. The phrase "this has been a great campaign" makes this seem a valedictory mailing -- will Mahoney be absent from what I assume will be a massive mailer crush on Monday?

This is the fifth in a series of "P.O. Box 13" blog posts about campaign mailers in the 13th Worcester House District race. The opinions expressed are those of a 13th Worcester District voter and not necessarily those of The series will continue.

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