Then, we saw "Mr. Education Fix It". I really think he offered some good ideas...
But there were two major problems. One, Rory didn't want to talk about how he'd pay for his plan. And two, in my humble opinion he didn't stress enough the economic reality of broken down schools. Remember when I wrote this in March?
[T]he casinos can no longer be counted upon as a "free ride". We can't just expect new casino construction to prop up demand for construction jobs, which props up demand for new housing, which props up demand for housing construction, which props up the rest of Southern Nevada's economy. We may have lucked out in seeing this model work from 1989 to 2007, but all it really did was hide the weaknesses in this shaky economic model that ended up being exposed when "The Great Recession" hit and all the artificial demand for new casinos, new homes, new whatever fell like a row of dominoes. [...]
So again and again, we come back to this dilemma. As long as our education system is broken and as long as we continue to make ourselves overdependent on the casinos and casino-fueled development, Las Vegas will continue to suffer under this radical boom and bust cycle that lives and dies on discretionary consumer spending. Sorry, but this is not how a major metropolitan area with 2 million residents and a state with over 2.7 million residents can survive!
This is what Rory needed to illustrate in his ads. This is what he needed to talk about over and over and over again. And it seemed he was starting to "get it" and see some traction, then it stalled.
And on Wednesday, it looked like the great reveal of a new strategy, perhaps "Rory 3.0". Perhaps last week's ad was the sign of what's to come, but we definitely saw a change of course on Wednesday.
Apparently, Rory has a new attitude. He's populist! He cares for us! He's standing up against the big corporate interests!
Then Ralston blew it all up. Of course, we all know who Brian Sandoval stands with... But it isn't easy to get all "populist" when one is backed by many of the same power players who stand with the other guy. Sigh...
So what can be done? Honestly, I'm still trying to figure that out. I really think Rory Reid wants to do good for Nevada... Lordy knows he's been doing his best to turn things around on the Clark County Commission!
I just hope there's still time to turn things around. As Bill Clinton said on Wednesday, if Rory can reframe this on who can turn Nevada around, he can win. It just comes down to that. So is Rory up to the challenge?
We shall see.
Btw, here's the full rally in case you want to bask in that aura again. I also have more from Wednesday on my Twitter. ;-)