People are talking that Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of Hillary and Bill Clinton, may be eyeing a run for Congress
to replace the retiring Nina Lowey in the 17th Congressional seat of Westchester County.
Chelsea, the “tableau rasa” brand of the family name, has an opportunity to write on that blank slate by wisely choosing to run in the great state of New York, where the Clintons now reside.
The Westchester Congressional District (CD) is the easy lift. It’s comfortable for her since she lived there; it is smart and logical for those proposing it as a viable seat for her win. It appears simply too perfect. Said another way, the only thing wrong with it is this: It’s not bold. And in the age of Trump, boldness is both sufficient and necessary to ensure success.
A smarter, bolder run for the novice Clinton is against the social media darling Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. There she could be bold and define her brand as the one that saved the Democratic Party by neutralizing the radicals who are attempting to implement a hostile takeover with policies that have few supporters but loud promoters.
By running against AOC, Chelsea does a number of things not only for her brand but for her political future as well.
First, she solves Nancy Pelosi’s problem by ridding her of a member who really doesn’t comprehend politics. This lack of understanding of the political “rules of engagement” makes it impossible to accomplish anything. Without AOC and her nonpolitical brand of leadership, gridlock is removed and intelligent solutions once again are in play.
This is discussed in more detail in our recent column, “AOC is not a political brand.” It would be the Speaker’s dream come true to defeat the perceived political lightweight who is breaking every political rule in the book and destroying any possibility of keeping the Democratic majority in the House.
Second, the younger Clinton eliminates future headaches for the New York State Governor, whom AOC offended by supporting another candidate for District Attorney in Queens County, where the Governor was raised and has strong personal roots. The net-net is that Chelsea makes another powerful politician very happy, thereby acquiring "chits" — so important in political gamesmanship now and in the future. It makes her an instant superstar. Yes, even bigger than AOC. It also enhances Chelsea’s value to those local pols who thought that AOC was undefeatable and the only game in town. What a difference a winning campaign can make. Just ask AOC.
Third, defeating AOC would unify local Queens pols who were outraged by AOC’s audacity in “marching” in with an unknown candidate for DA without even a “heads-up” to their chosen candidate — the Queens Borough President.
Fourth, were Chelsea to take on AOC, it would send a message for anyone even thinking about challenging the established local and statewide political brands that currently hold power. This, in turn, increases her popularity within the local precincts necessary in winning statewide office.
And fifth, this run for AOC’s CD seat positions Clinton as the brand that saved the Democratic Party from a vociferous faction that understands how to generate media attention, but doesn’t have a clue regarding how to maintain power. And power is the basic tenet to all political activity.
The question for Chelsea is: which CD race is best for her long-term brand longevity and robustness?
From a marketing and branding perspective, the AOC seat is by far the choice with limitless potential. Playing it safe in Westchester would not have the same sweeping impact.
One thing Chelsea should consider when making her final decision: It’s always easier when you have marketing and branding in mind.
Dr. John Tantillo is a marketing and branding expert, known as The Marketing Doctor. JT utilizes his doctoral skills in applied research psychology to analyze the issues and personalities of the day utilizing his marketing and branding lens. This provides his readers with additional insight needed to understand the “new normal” in politics, news, and culture. Dr. Tantillo is the OpEd writer for Political Vanguard. He is the author of "People Buy Brands, Not Companies,” and the Udemy course "Go Brand Yourself!" You can follow him on Twitter @marketingdoctor and at Facebook.com/dr.johntantillo. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.
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