Stay away from campaign con artists

If you or someone you know is considering running for public office in the 2018 elections, you might want to read this column and perhaps save it for future reference.

You can tell
It is very easy to tell the smart 2018 candidates from the not-so-smart candidates.

The smart candidates are setting up their campaign operations right now, at this very moment. They have identified or hired political professionals with expert training and a track record of campaign success. They are raising campaign money and they are putting together and mapping out a plan for Election Day victory.

The not-so-smart candidates are merely talking about running for office. They are seeking advice from their girlfriends, their home boys, their classmates, their coworkers and distant family members and relatives.

They don’t have a clue about campaign law and regulations. They don’t know anything about the district, county or city they plan to run in. They have no strategy concerning fundraising. They are content to wait until the very last moment to announce their intention to enter the political arena.

Signatures not enough
The candidates that don’t have the necessary funds to pay filing fees will listen to campaign clowns that tell them all they have to do is collect enough valid signatures from registered voters to avoid paying filing fees to get on the ballot.

Well, there is nothing wrong with having an organized signature collection effort that is designed to achieve collection goals; that has a specified message to encourage registered voters to sign cards in support of your candidacy; that has a plan to identify and train collectors, a way to transport collectors to designated collection sites, and a way to get food and water to collectors if they get hungry or thirsty while spending days and evenings trying to help you.

Now, the smart candidate has professionals that know how to do needed campaign research. The professionals can find out where the frequent voters are, who contributed to whom in previous elections, where media money was spent and in what amounts, when campaign reports are due to be filed, etc.

The not-so-smart candidates will know zero about how to conduct a winning political campaign effort.

Most of their campaign advice will come from political con men, political charlatans and political beggars!

‘Hire me!’
At every church they visit, at every reception they attend, at every group they speak to, at every barber or beauty shop and on every corner in every neighborhood, more than a few people will run up to them and say, “Hire me. I can help you!”

All they know is someone puts flyers on windshields and someone puts up signs –and they will beg to get paid to do that.

They know nothing about television, radio, billboards, Internet marketing, targeting, polling, printing, direct mailing, “robo-calls,” or anything else that most campaign money is spent on.

Smart candidates win. Other candidates lose.

Even some dumb politicians are smart campaigners. Donald Trump is already gearing up for re-election and he doesn’t have to run until 2020!

If you want to run for office in 2018, get with someone that has experience in winning. Stay away from the campaign con men and women!

Buy Gantt’s latest book, “Beast Too: Dead Man Writing,” on and from bookstores everywhere. “Like” The Gantt Report page on Facebook. Contact Lucius at


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