May 18th, 2010
On a day when the American political world is focused on a handful of “insurgent” (outsider) campaigns challenging incumbent or establishment senatorial candidates in Pennsylvania, Arkansas and Kentucky, Jose Antonio Vargas asks in The Huffington Post whether the social web is a natural fit for candidates like Joe Sestak, Bill Halter and Rand Paul. The verdict? Future cloudy; ask again later. I.e., yes, online social tools can be a big help for a nontraditional candidate (or one not favored by the political elite), but on their own they’re no guarantee of victory. Jose has quotes from two friends-of-e.politics (Jon Henke, Peter Greenberger) besides my own “no silver bullet” line at the end, so be sure to check it out. And it’s going to be fascinating to see the results as they roll in — some prominent or well-backed political names (Arlen Specter, Blanche Lincoln, Trey Grayson) might not be with us much longer, in a political sense at least.