Thankful That It’s All Over

Well, that was quite an election.

I can’t begin to count the number of times over the past year that I was thankful that we weren’t doing PR for any of the candidates. The headaches would have been unimaginable. Not only do politics and ethical PR have major built-in conflicts, but the challenges of dealing with either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton would have been insurmountable.

On the one hand, Trump until the last two weeks of the campaign was completely unable to stay on message and avoid thoughtless comments that the media and his opponents jumped on. And Clinton had so much baggage from the email server and other issues that forthright and honest answers were out of the question.

There are two reasons why we always recommend honesty to our clients. First, it’s the right thing to do. And second, you can’t be caught in a lie or have to struggle to keep your stories straight if you tell the truth in the first place.

We actually have done political PR, but just once. And we have to say that it was a really good experience. We worked with a U.S. Senate candidate, Ken Cope, in the Texas 2014 primary election. Working with him started out as a favor to a family member of one of our former employees, but we quickly came to love Ken. He was decent, honest, and humble. No surprise that he didn’t win.

If all candidates were like that, we would happily do political PR. As it is, we’ll stick with the private sector, thanks.