THE 30 SECOND CANDIDATE HISTORICAL TIMELINEFROM IDEA TO ADTRICKS OF THE TRADEQ_AND_ATHE TELEVISION PROGRAM
Wisconsin Public Television
     

         
1998  
   
   

In the California Democratic primary race for Governor, wealthy candidates Al Checchi and Jane Harman spent unprecedented sums on television advertising.

When Checchi and Harman attacked each other in ads, voters turned to the third candidate, Lt. Governor Gray Davis.

Also in California, candidates Lois Capps and Tom Bordanaro competed in a special election for a House seat from the Santa Barbara area. The candidates' ads competed for attention with ads produced by outside interest groups. Pro-life, pro-choice, and congressional term limits supporters all used advertising to get their issues before the voters and influence the election.

   
       
   


READ THE EXPERTS' ANALYSIS OF WHAT HAPPENED IN CALIFORNIA

Alex Castellanos
Jeff Greenfield
Kathleen Hall Jamieson
Bob Squier

 

   
   
CASTELLANOS: Al Checchi proved the dictum that the most dangerous place is the middle of the road. He ran as a Democrat who was going to fight crime, who was going to cut bureaucracy, and do all of those things that Republicans usually do.

He was doing great until Lungren got into the race and the voters figured out there was a real Republican in the race. So he got sandwiched on the left by Davis and lost votes to the Republican on the right and, you know, the lesson there is that American politics starts at the wings and moves towards the middle. You can't build a candidacy in a primary from the mushy center. There's no support.

   

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