Earlier this week, Democrat Andrew Romanoff's campaign for Congress in CD-6 released its first online video to draw attention to what is already the most closely-watched House race in the country. The fact that Romanoff's campaign made a nice online video is not particularly notable in and of itself, nor is Romanoff's message in said video. But when you watch Romanoff's performance and compare it to the first significant TV ad from 2012 Democratic challenger Joe Miklosi, there is a stark difference; Romanoff is exponentially more likable on camera than Miklosi or Republican incumbent Rep. Mike Coffman.
Both Romanoff and Coffman are raising veritable shitloads of money, and third-party expenditures on each side will push total spending in this race near the $20 million mark when all is said and done. Since both candidates should have plenty of resources for TV, mail, and voter outreach, the outcome in a close race will be decided on points such as likability. And that — more than any other issue in this race — is why Coffman and National Republicans are so concerned about Romanoff. Take a look at Romanoff's video below, then compare it to Miklosi's 2012 campaign ad after the jump:
Now, take a look at Joe Miklosi's first major ad from the fall of 2012:
Miklosi comes off as stiff and robotic, which is a considerable difference from the much more smooth and polished Romanoff you see in the first video. If he had been more likable on camera, would Miklosi have been able to bridge the small gap that prevented him from beating Coffman in 2012? That's a tough call to make, even in hindsight, but it certainly would have helped.
With Romanoff, Democrats have a candidate whose affability and personality are a major advantage over the generally dour Coffman. This matters. A lot. Especially when both candidates are going to have all the resources they need to promote their respective candidacies. In races as close as CD-6, even the tiniest advantage can mean the difference; but this is one area where Romanoff is clearly better than Coffman.