Los Angeles City Hall politics revealed from an insider's point of view.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Trutanich blames campaign strategist for 'lack of name recognition' in failed DA race

The Los Angeles Dragnet reports that failed DA candidate Carmen Trutanich is blaming his former campaign strategist, John Shallman, for his 'Hindenburg-like' defeat. The tough talking city prosecutor believes that more people would have known his name and voted for him if Shallman had purchased slate mailers instead of tv ads. The claim is laughable as Trutanich had more name recognition, money and endorsements than any other candidate. He lost the election because more voters knew who and what he was; a liar.

This from the Dragnet:

Rumors suggest that embattled Los Angeles City Attorney Carmen 'Nuch' Trutanich is desperately trying to pin the blame for his 'Hindenburg-like' defeat in the DA primary election on his campaign strategist John Shallman. Trutanich believes that Shallman's failure to advise the DA wannabe to purchase slate mailers caused him to suffer from a 'lack of name recognition' in LA County.

Trutanich came in stone last of the three frontrunners in the DA primary despite having a campaign warchest three times larger than his closest rival, Chief Deputy District Attorney Jackie Lacey. Trutanich blew his wad on a glitzy tv ad campaign, a strategy that saw him swamp LA tv with so many advertisements that he ended up deeply in debt as he increased his television exposure in the final weeks of his ill-fated campaign. 

Lacey, who beat Trutanich by 12 points, eschewed tv advertising altogether, instead concentrating her campaign on securing key slate mailers. That, it seems, is what Trutanich is now saying caused his humiliating political castration, and he is laying the blame squarely at the feet of his former 'Ambassador of Quan' for failing to advise him to purchase slate mailers. 

It's a convenient argument, particularly as Trutanich owes Shallman an estimated $112,000 for the final tv ad media buys, and Trutanich apparently does not have any money in his campaign committee account to pay Shallman. Trutanich also faces a further hurdle finding supporters willing to help to retire his debt; most of his supporters have already given the maximum allowable contribution and, as Doug McIntyre recently commented, now that Trutanich has been 'Tagged with the big 'L' for 'LOSER,' the Scarlet ''L,' it's real hard to find anyone to write fresh checks.'

Some speculate that Trutanich's slate mailer blame shifting is most likely a ploy either to stall the issue of his indebtedness, or to try to renegotiate terms with Shallman who makes a handsome commission on media buys. Either way it's a ploy that fails to pass the straight face test. The notion that Trutanich lacked 'name recognition' is as hilariously ridiculous as most of his other campaign missteps and completely ignores the fact that while first-placed finisher Lacey did have slate mailers, the second-placed finisher, Alan Jackson, beat Trutanich by two points and did not have any slate mailers either.

The inconvenient truth about Trutanich is that with or without slate mailers, and despite a million dollar tv campaign, he could never, ever, overcome the negative name recognition which started the moment Trutanich reneged on his 'Pledge to Serve,' and continued throughout his campaign of facile,  deceptive and deceitful shenanigans. The voters of Los Angeles made it very clear that having let Trutanich make fools out of them once, they were not going to allow that to happen again.


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