candidates

We Love Anthony Woods. But He Needs to Work on That Whole ‘Messaging’ Thing

Anthony Woods is the gay Iraq vet, Bronze Star wearer, and West Point grad who wants to be a northern California congressman, and we’re pretty sure we’re in love with him. Woods, who was kicked out of the military for being gay (and stuck with his $35k Harvard tuition bill!), is obviously anti-Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. Voters will have a chance to put him in office in a special election to replace Ellen Tauscher, who’s joining the Obama administration. Our words of advice: Get in the fray!

Woods joined Bill Maher’s Real Time on Friday night for a couple of segments, alongside outspoken folks like media types Matt Taibbi and John Heilemann. But we barely heard from him! Sure, Maher’s ego is huge, but he does let his guests speak more than, say, a Bill O’Reilly. Which means we need to hear from Woods. Jump in there. Get your voice heard. Don’t rely only on the DailyKos crowd. To go from relative unknown to commander of all media, Woods needs to work on his delivery.

While Woods might make a great candidate in theory, the best politicians own the room. And their message. And while Woods may be competing for the congressional seat on a shoestring budget, it’s clear something is amiss when a candidate running for elected office has fewer than 900 Twitter followers. It represents what’s becoming a clear problem: Woods isn’t doing a good enough job introducing himself to constituents, or the public at large. Yard signs are great, but there’s a lot more work to be done.

Indeed, he’s raised over $100,000 for himself, mostly with netroots promoting and small checks from many donors. But he’s squaring off against three other well-known Democrats (two state legislators and the lieutenant governor), who have raised more cash than he. And while there’s still no front-runner, Woods isn’t considered among the possibilities, even with obvious endorsements from the Human Rights Campaign and the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund. This represents the perfect window of opportunity for Woods to make a move; shake things up, zig while they zag. He’s got Barack Obama‘s fundraising skills down. Now he needs his messaging.

And we know Woods can be a better orator, because he delivered Harvard’s resonating commencement speech (below). More like this, please.

(h/t Rod 2.0)