Goal — The goal of this assignment is to develop your own political campaign and construct it based on the strategies you perceive as ideal. For this assignment your job is to design a campaign and construct a corresponding campaign strategy. The campaign can be for any elected office, whether state or local, congressional, or presidential. You do not need to include which party the candidate is aligned with, this assignment is simply about the strategies undertaken.
Concepts — A political campaign is defined as: “an organized effort to persuade and mobilize voters to support or oppose a party or candidate” (Sides, Shaw, Grossmann, & Lipsitz, 2018). In a campaign, a number of individuals take part in crafting various strategies that they think will best serve the purpose of winning an election. A campaign strategy consists of a campaign’s understanding of how its candidate is going to win the election, who will vote for the candidate, and why. Strategies can take various forms and utilize many different means to get their message across. Numerous factors go into deciding how to construct a campaign strategy, and what the best option will be to mobilize and persuade potential voters. Campaigns need to consider who their target voters are, where they will obtain the majority of their funding, the issues they plan to emphasize, and how they will advertise. Candidates and their staff have to understand the best way to present their messages to the population they are targeting, as well as whether to use strictly positive or negative advertisements or a combination of both. Even after developing what some might argue is a perfect campaign, the candidate in question might lose the election. This means that there are many ways to construct the ideal campaign and succeed in an election.
Instructions — Each student is to write a 2-3 page paper (double-spaced) which addresses the following:
1. First, explain the office your candidate is running for and why your candidate chose to
run for the office you have chosen. Who would be your target voters and how would your campaign appeal to that particular group? What issues would your campaign emphasize and how would the campaign present your issue positions?
2. Explain how your campaign would be financed. Would you only take small-scale
donations or would you allow corporations and interest groups to also donate to your campaign?
3. How would you advertise for your campaign? Would you only use television or social
media advertisements, or would you utilize a combination of both? How would you employ advertisements on either of these mediums and what is the best way to reach your target voters? Would you use only positive or negative advertisements or a combination? What other strategies might you employ on your campaign not included here?