Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Saskatchewan NDP - Regina Nomination Roundup

To date, I haven't followed up much on the Regina Coronation Park and Regina South nomination races since mentioning the entry of each candidate. But now that the fields look to be fairly well set, let's take a closer look at what each candidate is currently doing to build support online.

Off the top, it's worth noting that each one of the six candidates has put together at least a reasonably well-updated Facebook group in support of his or her effort - not to mention that all six candidates attended the Prince Albert provincial convention to interact with the broader party. But it's worth also pointing out some of the creative steps taken beyond that strong baseline of activity for all of the candidates. So let's go through the candidates in alphabetical order by riding to see what they've been up to.

Regina Coronation Park

The first candidate to review also looks to be winner in the creativity department so far. Jaime Garcia's campaign has left no stone unturned in getting his name out into the public, with the efforts so far ranging from billboards to custom pop bottles in addition to active Facebook, Twitter and web presences. And the fact that he's also held a fund-raising dinner hints at how he's been able to afford forms of advertising not normally expected in a nomination race. About the only question I'd have about Garcia's campaign so far is his degree of focus on candidate branding over policy - but he's certainly done well in getting his name known.

The other Regina Coronation Park candidate with a complete set of online campaign tools is Tamara Harder, who likewise features regular Facebook and Twitter updates to go with the strongest web presence among the Coronation Park candidates. (Disclaimer: As mentioned before, I'm helping out with Tamara's campaign.)

Not surprisingly, Fred Kress is somewhat behind the younger candidates in his online presence, as he's the candidate with the longest gap in online updates (having last posted on March 21). Hopefully he'll get back in the habit of posting, as his earlier updates offered some sharper and more candid commentary than most of the candidates have provided.

Finally, Tory McGregor has also gone awhile since his last update on March 23. But it's worth highlighting a few of his earlier entries which reflect the most direct effort of any of the candidates to educate voters about an area of interest (that being the Sask Party's proposed changes to environmental regulation).

Regina South

As expected, both of the candidates in Regina South have maintained a strong online presence. But the most notable new development looks to be Heather McIntyre's Coffee Talk feature, offering visitors the chance to hear conversational interviews about Heather's campaign (with more apparently to come) to accompany her regular written updates.

Meanwhile, Yens Pedersen's campaign has provided updates primarily through his Facebook group, featuring a bevy of photos and outside links. It's worth noting that much of Yens' website (including the blog portion) has been pared down or cleared since last year's leadership race, and it'll be worth watching the extent to which he ends up offering less formal commentary on the nomination race to counter McIntyre's personal focus.

Update (April 9): To his credit, Jaime Garcia has been posting plenty of policy links and commentary over the past few days since I posted the above. For my next demand, I'd like to see a musical number.

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