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Political Strategy

Succumbing to Trumpism. It's Just Business.

Alan Kelly | Posted 08.18.2015 | Business
Alan Kelly

I have to marvel at Trump and his art-of-the-deal frame. It's not actually about ego. It's about business. It's about quid-pro-quo. About winning. Leverage. And with respect to American voters, it's about getting back what we've given away too freely.

While Hillary Conditions, Bernie Engages. Guess Who's Rising?

Alan Kelly | Posted 07.10.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

To understand the hows and whys of Bernie Sanders' spike and Hillary Clinton's stall, look no further than the plays they're running. Two recent CNN sit downs serve this purpose, beginning with Brianna Keilar's interview of Clinton.

How Mitt Romney and Retailers Dismantled Dixie

Alan Kelly | Posted 06.30.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

When the disillusioned 21-year-old Dylann Roof shot and killed nine black worshipers at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC, the tragedy quickly focused on the legacy of the Confederate flag and its tacit endorsement of racism. For presidential candidates courting southern conservatives, this called for high-wire political acts.

Hillary's Peacock, Jeb's Crowd and Donald's Trump

Alan Kelly | Posted 06.18.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

This week offered a trifecta of plays in the game of presidential campaigning. Three personalities, each larger than life, made their candidacies and causes officially known.

Strategies Behind Slogans Betray the Politics

Alan Kelly | Posted 06.12.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

While Jeb Bush dithers, there's much to be said about his opponents' slogans. What's escaped the white gloves of so many branding gurus is an analysis of the influence plays that support them. They tell a deeper story of the candidate's intentions and interests.

Rand and Bernie: Running Plays on Patriot Acts and Plutocrats

Alan Kelly | Posted 06.04.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

In the plays for the presidency 2016, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul is a Libertarian running as a Republican. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders is a Socialist running as a Democrat. Each subscribes to an ideology that the American two-party system eschews.

Politics as Performance: From Obama's Luther to Huckabee's Christ

Alan Kelly | Posted 05.15.2015 | Comedy
Alan Kelly

As the White House Correspondents' Dinner reliably demonstrates, performance is the new politics. By tapping comedy, drama and other forms of storytelling influencers can access strategies they'd normally never employ.

Can Britain's Conservative Landslide Cross the Pond?

Julianne Shinto | Posted 05.11.2015 | Politics
Julianne Shinto

The victory hangovers have yet to wear off for my colleagues in the U.K. But my U.S. counterparts are already asking, "How can we replicate the sweeping conservative victory here, in the States?" I have the answer and I haven't been quiet about it in the least.

I'm Freddy Gray, Says Hillary. And You're Rich, Says Bernie

Alan Kelly | Posted 06.30.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

How might Sanders, a self-described democratic socialist, reflect on Hillary's Baltimore-soaked bravado?

So How About Lincoln Chafee For President?

David Russell | Posted 06.13.2015 | Politics
David Russell

Chafee could generate excitement. His willingness to go after Clinton is very useful especially if Warren remains in a leadership position in the Senate and keeps firing off legislative bombshells.

The Provocateur: Cruz Goes Hard Right on the Influence Spectrum

Alan Kelly | Posted 05.26.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

In contests of most any kind, it's often best to go second. Particularly if you think you're the better player. But if you're the weaker, then surely you should go first.

All Quiet Except Cruz. And Did You Read About Al Gore?

Alan Kelly | Posted 05.19.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

With just 600 days until the 2016 general elections, it was reasonable to have a break in the recent political weather and wind. And we got it for two reasons: Democrats were getting past emailgate and Republicans were getting past Bibi and Iran.

I'm Kinda Sorry: Hillary's Plays on Her Emailing Ways

Alan Kelly | Posted 05.13.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

Instead of running at the revelations of her private email service, she preferred to finesse the foment with signature testing, freezing and diverting strategies.

Step Brothers 2016? Mitt and Jeb's Feud for President

Alan Kelly | Posted 03.16.2015 | Politics
Alan Kelly

Think of Romney as Dale, played by actor John C. Reilly, more entitled than his new-found half-sibling. And think of Jeb Bush as Brennen, played by Will Ferrell, which is easy given the comedian's facility for impersonating another brother, George W. Bush. Are you following so far?

Progressives Are the Future of the Democratic Party

Sam Wohns | Posted 03.09.2015 | Politics
Sam Wohns

We can't tell the story of the 2014 election as simply a victory by Republicans over Democrats. In fact, I think we can understand a lot about the strengths and weaknesses of the Democratic Party by looking at which Democrats won and which lost.

Learning From 2014 and Turning to 2016: Democrats Still Need a Compelling Economic Message

Sheri and Allan Rivlin | Posted 02.22.2015 | Politics
Sheri and Allan Rivlin

The greatest mystery of the 2014 mid-term election is the question of why all of our leading analysts knew how important it is for Democrats to have a compelling economic message aimed at middle class voters, and yet we managed to get to the end of the election cycle without coalescing around an effective narrative.

How We Should Advise Myanmar Now to Achieve Future Stability

Dr. Maha Hosain Aziz | Posted 02.04.2015 | World
Dr. Maha Hosain Aziz

How else should we be advising Myanmar now so its version of democracy isn't derailed in the future? Here are three pieces of advice that the US and other foreign actors should offer Myanmar's government to help create a stable, more inclusive society:

Women Be Damned: Of Politics and the Plays They Run

Alan Kelly | Posted 12.17.2014 | Politics
Alan Kelly

Can women in politics run the same plays as men? For Alison Lundergan Grimes and Wendy Davis, one wonders if the system and society will let them run any at all?

This Week, We're All Gay: Supreme Court's Pass Is a Play

Alan Kelly | Posted 12.08.2014 | Gay Voices
Alan Kelly

Our laws define us, if even by force, and so we move forward, wearing the shoes of the disenfranchised.

Clinton's Hard Choices: Too Smart or Too Dumb?

Alan Kelly | Posted 08.12.2014 | Books
Alan Kelly

What remains of the carcass of Hillary Clinton's new book and dubious tour, picked over by legions of fellow pundits, is the simple duty to observe the obvious -- that Hillary Clinton runs plays. Lots of them.

Clinton and Cruz: Peacocking Because They Can

Alan Kelly | Posted 11.25.2013 | Politics
Alan Kelly

Hillary's is a sideshow that will be countered later. But Cruz's circus is playing now and it's being panned, not only by House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell but by Barack Obama and top Democrats.

The Value of a Full Spectrum View

Mark R. Kennedy | Posted 11.20.2013 | Politics
Mark R. Kennedy

"It doesn't matter what I think. It matters what the market thinks." Whether you are a financier, a retailer, an entertainer, or a political manager, this simple rule applies.

The Shadow Knows: Four Plays That Define Obama's Syria Strategy

Alan Kelly | Posted 11.04.2013 | World
Alan Kelly

When in 2003 President George W. Bush told his fellow Americans that Iraq's weapons of mass destruction were lurking, he was surely running a play. I...

How the New Voter ID Laws are the Tonya Harding and New Orleans Saints of American Politics

Myisha Cherry | Posted 10.14.2013 | Politics
Myisha Cherry

Sabotage may be accepted in war but should not be accepted in American politics. Our democracy is supposed to be for the people and by the people. To have this not be so, is to bring injury to citizens, our nation and the democratic process.

A Teaching From McCullough Gulch: 7 Guidelines for Life

Matthew Dowd | Posted 08.28.2013 | Politics
Matthew Dowd

It was on one soulful hike that I realized there are some valuable "rules" to keep in mind as one ventures into the woods or up the side of an incredible mountain. All these revelations on my hike apply to life in general and in politics.