I couldn’t help myself in responding to the analysis of Steve Cooley campaign consultant, Kevin Spillane. This morning on AirTalk, KPCC political reporter Frank Stoltze played a couple of excerpts of Spillane’s comments in conceding the state Attorney General’s race to Kamala Harris. What enraged me were two of Spillane’s comments: that Cooley lost because media weren’t paying attention to down-ticket races, and that the L. A. County DA lacked name recognition in Los Angeles County.
Our production team spent months trying to get Cooley on our air. We were completely bypassed in the primary, when Cooley could’ve been building his appeal among independent and Democratic voters. For the general election, we got him for one interview at the very end of the campaign.
Cooley could’ve made multiple appearances on KPCC talk programs, as well as other prominent public radio talk shows up and down California. Allowing the candidate to talk about the issues in longer conversations would’ve had an enormous payoff from the high-percentage of voters among public radio listeners.
Kamala Harris embraced appearances on KPCC, as her campaign knew that she had to introduce herself to Southern California listeners. Cooley’s campaign should’ve understood that he needed swing and Democratic voters, and that significant numbers of them would be found in the public radio audience.
I have no sympathy for the argument that media ignored Steve Cooley’s campaign, when the campaign itself chose to keep the candidate away from the very voters he needed to win.