Different Strategy

A Fool In NH Column HeadingMany of my inner circle insist that it is too early for me to be announcing another run for governor of New Hampshire, but I disagree. I think that the time is perfect.

It is apparent that our present governor, Maggie Hassan, won’t be running in 2016. She is following the tried and true path of “public service” and will most likely be eyeing a spot as U.S. Senator next year.
So, with the governorship most likely to be up for grabs in 2016, I want in and I feel the sooner I get into the race this time, the more time I will have to travel across the state and bring people my message.
I have learned a lot over the many years I have run for governor under the Flatlander Ticket. I have tried all sorts of different approaches that I thought would work. I even tried honesty, telling people that I was only running for the $100,000 a year salary. That didn’t work. It seems people vote based on what I call the “Maybe Theory.”
The “Maybe Theory” is based on the premise that if you vote for so-and-so, then “maybe” things will actually change like they promise. Of course, it isn’t long after the election that your candidate gets elected and you find out that your “maybe” was not to be and things were going to be the same, if not worse.
It really didn’t matter which candidate won and from which party. “Maybe” just wasn’t going to happen.
So, this next campaign, should I choose to run (which is what you have to say for a few months when you know darn well you are running) I will have to revert back to the tried and true method of just telling people that I am going to do stuff that I will never be able to do.
It’s worked for hundreds of years so far so why mess with success?
I am also going to be sure to bandy about the phrase “public service” when I talk about why I want to be governor. People seem to eat up that malarkey as well.
If I’m lucky, and people buy it, then I will follow the step-by-step route of “public service” that has been successfully completed by so many before me: local planning board, state legislature, governor, US senator and maybe (gulp) president. If not president, then certainly either decades as a highly paid senator or, better yet, I can retire from the senate to become a lobbyist for a very special interest where I can make gobs and gobs of money. Either way, the end result might see me in a big house or three, maybe a limo and a maid or two and don’t forget the private jet.
When I finally retire they will have a big party for me (at a very expensive banquet hall, of course) where they will praise me for my years of “public service.” You will need a special invite to be admitted and, if you are just a regular joe who voted for me year after year, photos will be allowed, but please keep back at least thirty-feet from the banquet hall entrance.
When all is said and done, I can then take a well-deserved vacation at one of my three beautiful secluded beach front homes where I will even spend my retirement in “public service” doing things like working with the local planning board to make sure that my beach front homes stay secluded; coming full circle in a way.
Of course, this is all just a dream now, but a dream I never could have fulfilled if I continued to follow my previous campaign strategies of telling people the truth. It was worth a shot, but if I am ever going to have any shot of winning, it’s time to stick to what’s tried and true (well, tried anyway).
Over the next few months I will continue to ponder (I love that word, sounds so introspective) whether or not taking another run for governor makes any sense for me. I will weigh all of my options, the good and the bad. I will take into consideration how it will affect my family. (After all, going from living in a small cape to maybe one day having the whole three beach homes and private jet thing can be traumatic.)
Once I have thought it through carefully, I will then give you my decision and if I decide to run I promise to be one of the best candidates of “maybe” that I can be.
I promise.

Brendan’s new book “The Best Of A F.O.O.L In New Hampshire” will be published this spring.