Leopold's Interesting Campaign Style...or Heil Hawaii and his Five-Oh Accomplishments ~ Annapolis Capital Punishment

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Leopold's Interesting Campaign Style...or Heil Hawaii and his Five-Oh Accomplishments

John Leopold, our current county executive is what one might call eccentric or perhaps a political "maverick". As a young man he went to Hawaii, became a state delegate and then senator and then ran for governor (which he does not say on his web-site...but hold on a second...) and then for some reason, poof...he left Hawaii. Presumably he liked the climate here better??? One can only image why he zipped. Perhaps in light of other activities, maybe it had something to do with...a zipper? Perhaps we'll have to hire Magnum P.I. to find out.  Higgins! Higgins, where are you??

He became a Maryland state delegate and then ran for county executive. Up against a Democratic sheriff, he focused his campaign on waving at street corners, day after day after day, and it paid off. He narrowly won--despite a well organized and well-financed Democratic campaign.

Before that, he was consistently the top vote-getter in every campaign for delegate, which was usually a six-way race.

Here we are four years later and his unusual style is working to do its magic again. As the CE of one of Maryland's largest political units, the 67-year old is probably the state's highest ranking Republican elected official right up there with Congressman Roscoe Bartlett. He has no campaign manager. He of course has a treasurer but he appears to be mainly relying on his spokesperson, former Capital reporter David Abrams.
But let me draw your attention to his web-site. Go on. Check it out. It's ...it's creepy, like out of a Stephen King movie or something. The tall, gaunt man who enjoys impersonating Abraham Lincoln appears as a shadowy figure with a red background. Leopold's outstretched hand is touching the hazy, yellow sun breaking through the red sky as he looms over and high-fives a child wearing a hooded parka. Stop this please!  Who designs this stuff? It gets worse. Leopold squints and smiles as his hand is extended. The boy gives back his loyalty. Or maybe it's more like Michelangelo's rendition of the Creator reaching out to Adam.  The back of another child's parka appears to be in view as well. Maybe it's the Michelin baby? It's just weird man!!  But his hand touching the halo of the sun is too much. Please God, make it stop.

Leopold aide Dave Abrams wrote the following to ACP:
John Leopold has always run his own campaign in his own style. He does not have handlers. He knocks on thousands of doors and interacts with voters face to face. I am the campaign spokesman, and I work as a volunteer. I do all of my campaign work after hours and outside of the office. The campaign has a treasurer, a spokesman (although Mr. Leopold mostly does his own talking) and volunteers. There is no campaign manager, per se. Does there have to be? The best campaign is doing a good job and keeping in regular contact with constituents, and that what Mr. Leopold does. I'm not sure what your beef is with the website.

I hope Dave now knows what's my beef. It's more like Mad Cow disease.
Leopold lists fifty accomplishments as County Executive, what I call The Hawaii Five Oh.  Check it out.


Heil Hawaii Baby, but will his tactics work this time in a three-way race? Book him Dano!

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Anastasia said...

It is quite fair of you to draw attention to the Republican County Executive's campaign website. But, what you are saying, by innuendo, is obnoxious.
*Did Leopold leave Hawaii because of some "zipper" incident?
*Leopold's campaign website is creepy, weird, and he's a gaunt and shadowy figure, looming over small boys.

C'mon, Paul! That's muck you're spreading. You're a capable journalist and I'd rather hear your facts and well-placed opinions, not mucky, unfounded suggestions.

Paul Foer said...

Thanks for the note. As for the "zipper" incident, the CE's history with members of the fairer sex is rather well established. I mam not makign an accusation, but the circumstances of moving up the political lader and zipping off the island is ...unusual. His campaign banner is creepy and weird. He is a gaunt and shadowy figure, looming over a small boy. It's just a fact. look at the photo. Thanks

Ted Anderson said...

I just wish our city leaders had half of the vision that Leopold had in keeping spending down during the good times. The guy has done a bang up job and deserves to be easily reelected. I will make my first prediction of the 2010 election....he wins by 2 touchdowns. As far as the 1st edition of this article....see Godwin's Law.

Paul Foer said...

Thanks Ted Well, you got me there. I am now a reformed believer in Godwin's Law. However, please understand that in now way did I mean to compare mr Leopold to we...you know who. However his pose is ofddly reminiscent of the Nazi salute. Again, the powerful and paternal figure. Really. Doesn't anyone else think the graphic is just spooky?

As for his record, I am happy to point readers to what I call his Hawaii 50--his fifty accomplishments. thanks PMF

ps...please feel free to send a donation!!

Anastasia said...

Well, I don't know if one parking lot incident establishes much of a history, but you're right in pointing out that it is a fact ... about something. Anyhow, I'd prefer to leave that fact in the dustbin of history.

As for the creepy feeling you get while perusing the Leopold website, that's your assessment and is not a fact.

I repeat (and I've said enough) that your informed views are most interesting and enjoyable, but not the mud you sling. You're better than that.

Paul Foer said...


The parking lot incident was but one among many more. It's hard to leave such a notorious incident in "the dustbin" since it was in a public vehicle, in a public place and the police apparently looked the other way.

Do you believe the photo and graphic is creepy or not? Look at it. What's it trying to say? What feelings does it evoke? Was it consciously stylized like that? Well? Does he not look paternalistic as he peers down at the little people? Is he not touching the light? Etc., etc.....It's weird. Opinion or fact? That's my point!

There was no mud-slinging. In fact the article is quite positive about Mr. Leopold. I talk abut his successful campaigning and I point to his list of accomplishments.

Methinks you doth protest too much.

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