Lee Fisher's Lessons in How to Lose an Election

Step 1: Ignore the public. Step 2: Ignore the online public.
  • Step 1: Ignore the public. Step 2: Ignore the online public.

Conventional wisdom says that a competitive primary race sharpens a candidate for the general election. Democratic Senate candidate Lee Fisher, who emerged victorious in a yearlong campaign against fellow Democrat Jennifer Brunner, seems intent on proving that wisdom wrong.

Last week, the weekly political rag National Journal ran an article detailing the jam-packed schedule of Republican candidate Rob Portman over the July 4 weekend, during which he and his wife walked in seven Northeast Ohio parades in two days and has T-shirted minions prominently planted at events throughout the region. Fisher, meanwhile, hit only a couple of events.

But Fisher’s sucking isn’t limited to pressing the flesh: His online presence lags behind Portman’s as well. He’s posted no press releases on his website since June 25 and hasn’t updates his news section since July 1. He hasn’t updated his Facebook page since July 1 either, apart from a generic holiday message more fitting of this newspaper. And his only Twitter message since then is a comment about LeBron’s departure that sounds so scripted and detached he could have cribbed it from LeBron himself.

Portman, meanwhile, is constantly blasting followers with new material on everything from cap and trade to his dad’s 88th birthday to LeBron’s departure. Maybe that’s why Fisher has only slightly more than 4,500 Facebook friends, while Portman just broke 15,000.

Even more glaring: Second quarter finance reports reveal that Portman has stockpiled $9 million to Fisher’s $1 million.

Despite the drubbing, current polls show the race tied up. If Fisher doesn’t wake from his stupor soon, he’ll be drooling in his hanky by November.