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Georges would earn politician label with party change

f it wasn’t enough self-deception on the part of (for now) Republican Louisiana gubernatorial candidate John Georges in his even getting into a race he could win, he may add on some more by thinking a party switch (or abandonment) will get himself elected – illustrating the big problems he and the other dwarves face in trying to prevent Republican Rep. Bobby Jindal from winning that contest.

A poll he commissioned showed that he would more than double his intended vote if he ran as an independent rather than as a Republican, so now he’s considering the idea – only a couple of weeks after he gave an interview in which he clearly identified himself as a Republican and with the party. He thinks the poll shows him the switch marginally could improve his chances to get into the general election runoff with Jindal.

One must shake his head trying to figure out this thought process. Yes, he might pick up some votes – going from 3 to 8 percent; twice nothing is still nothing compared to Jindal’s 50 percent-plus the survey caught. And he doesn’t seem to understand how such a move may look to voters when he’s the guy who’s been going around and saying he’s not a typical politician which is a reason to vote for him – it looks blatantly political switching just because you think it will pick up more votes. (He’s not the only one, obviously, in this race or in others.)

But let’s say its works and somehow he does make it to a runoff as Jindal does not get better than half of the vote. If the party change got him that far, what next, another after Oct. 20? Or is his strategy to hope Jindal gets caught with a live boy or a dead girl before election day? Clearly, whatever the strategy has been to this point, it flounders against Jindal.

(More delusional thinking from the Georges camp about this poll: his pollster thinks it’s wonderful that his name recognition has hit 55 percent – but that’s meaningless when you’re only pulling 3 percent of the vote. And that Georges comes off as the best second-choice vote – so what if the first choice is running away with it?)

What Georges has to understand is winners get elected on the basis of their personalities, their messages, and their campaigns. Jindal comes off as a sincere, somewhat experienced but not self-absorbed politician with a credible message that he will change the way things are done in Louisiana to positive effect, and he’s got a solid campaign organization. That’s hard to beat no matter how many gimmicks like party changes you try to throw into a campaign. So why should he chuck aside one thing that many think he does have going for him, sincerity?

Who knows whether Georges will make the switch come the end of qualifying Sep. 7? But if he does, we will know that Georges wasn’t all that authentic in his assertion that he was not your typical politician.

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