Rep. LeDoux needs new ad campaign

Posted: Thursday, July 31, 2008

I do not know who Rep. Gabrielle LeDoux's publicist, public relations firm or campaign manager is, but whoever is in charge of her campaign advertising is doing her a severe disservice.

I highly recommend LeDoux terminate her agreement with them at once and seek guidance that might salvage public opinion of her and her campaign. I believe there are three glaring examples in recent advertisements of why this course of action is desperately needed.

1) Playing up personal tragedy is distasteful. Anyone with an ounce of compassion understands that losing one's spouse or child would be a horrible experience. Losing both must have been a terrible ordeal. Personal losses, however, do not qualify one for political office and using those experiences in political advertising makes me and those I have spoken with uncomfortable with the campaign.

2) Unless there has been a sex change operation that LeDoux needs to confess to, I do not believe she is in danger of anyone accusing her of being a good old boy. She should just state that she is not a typical politician and stop there. Everyone knows that she is not a boy - good, old or otherwise.

3) Perhaps the most damning evidence present in LeDoux's ad campaigns is the recent mention of the Safe Surrender Act. Championing this law is not something she should be bragging about. I challenge her to find half a percent of the Alaska population that is even aware of the legislation or what it entails.

Those of us who are painfully aware of the law consider it a glaring example of bad legislation. There was no demonstrated need for the legislation, yet it was written anyway. The original bill was bad enough, but the version that came out of committee, which allows surrender of an infant to any person the parent reasonably believes to be responsible, is a nightmare.

The state Department of Health and Social Services requested a modest sum to train health care providers about their responsibilities under the new law. This request was denied. The Safe Surrender Act is yet another unnecessary, unfunded mandate thrust upon the citizens by legislators who do not understand the problems the public has, and wastes time creating problems we don't have.

LeDoux may or may not be qualified to represent Alaska in Washington, D.C. I do not think, with her current advertising campaign, she will get the opportunity to find out.

Mike Branum

Juneau



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