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January 20, 2010

Did Martha Coakley lose Senate race because of her ad agency?

Posted on Wed Jan 20 2010

There's lots of finger-pointing going on the day after Martha Coakley thoroughly tanked in her bid for Ted Kennedy's old Senate seat in Massachusetts. And at least one prominent blogger is putting the blame on the Coakley campaign's ad agency. The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder points out  that GMMB, which also created some of Barack Obama's ads for his presidential run, was "roundly criticized" for not running enough ads for Coakley after the primaries. Moreover, he cites a source who says Jim Margolis, a senior partner at the firm, was largely uninvolved in Coakley's campaign. "A source with knowledge of Margolis's role in the race says that only when it became clear that Coakley was in trouble did Margolis take personal charge of the Coakley account. I'm told that Margolis did not pitch the account and played no role at all in the campaign—until the White House asked him to help at the end—which he did, to their satisfaction," Ambinder writes. Margolis could not be reached for comment this morning. Is this a case of shooting the messenger? GMMB's Coakley ads don't look horrible—they're pretty stereotypical—but perhaps Coakley's claim in this ad that she'll be tough on Wall Street fell flat with voters who are frustrated with Obama's handling of the financial crisis.

—Posted by Todd Wasserman


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