Catchiest campaign ads of 2014: nine pitches that made an impression

What do Barry Manilow, skeet shooting, and driving a car in reverse have to do with the 2014 US elections? Well, this campaign season had no shortage of interesting TV ads – including ones with the motifs just mentioned. Here’s an election-season recap through the lens of ads that have had an influence on voters.

8. Driving backward to make a point

Paul Davis, as a Democrat running against an incumbent Republican in conservative Kansas, would normally have long odds. But Gov. Sam Brownback went so far with tax cuts that credit-rating firms have downgraded Kansas bonds because of worries about the state’s revenue stream. Mr. Davis plays up the problem in this ad, using a car being driven in reverse to symbolize the direction that Governor Brownback has allegedly taken the state.

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About a year ago, I happened upon this statement about the Monitor in the Harvard Business Review – under the charming heading of “do things that don’t interest you”:

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If you were to come up with a punchline to a joke about the Monitor, that would probably be it. We’re seen as being global, fair, insightful, and perhaps a bit too earnest. We’re the bran muffin of journalism.

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