Earlier in NC-13 - Bernie Reeves' Friends in the Press Have His Back...Dump on Bill Randall Polifrog wrote:
It must be nice being Bernie Reeves, an inside-the-beltway politician steered by old timers like Carter Wrenn. I suppose it is made all the sweeter when you've had decades to make the media connections only a local media mogul can, connections that are willing to support your political interests when the time is right. Heck, it might make Reeves feel a little like a liberal with the press at his back, but that is an argument for another time.
I thought I would explore the thought that Bernie Reeves has the press at his back and how that might affect him in the general election.
I believe it is intuitive that a man who,
...started the Spectator, Metro Magazine, The Triangle Business Journal and the Raleigh Spy Conference,...
has spent much of his time with his peers in the press. Networking, making friends, owing favors and having favors owed in return are all steps in a dance when doing business and Reeves has been a part of that dance for quite some time. This gives Reeves an edge in the primary, but unfortunately Reeves is relying on that edge to the point of overconfidence.
Reeves has, in both debates, either revealed flashes of anger or thinly veiled frustration. Some see this as an example of a bloated ego or arrogance, but I tend to believe that arrogance can be earned and Reeves, with his success in business, has more than earned the right to be arrogant from time to time. No, I believe Reeves' flashes of anger and frustration speak to something more problematic.
Reeves is press savvy, shrewd, and has cornucopia of knowledge from which to draw. He should know well what the press does to conservative politicians who let anger slip through the lenses of a camera. Such emotions from conservatives do not get labeled as godly passion by the press. Conservatives are, instead, vilified for expressing anger, yet there he is at the first debate defiantly looking down a press camera with anger! What is it in him that would allow that?
The answer is that Reeves finds too much comfort in his business friends in the press. Although, they are currently willing to look the other way when reporting on Reeves' debate performances against Randall, the press is fickle and the connections Reeves seems to be currently relying on to protect him from himself will likely be overlooked in a debate with Brad Miller.
This is my fear: that Reeves has grown too dependant on a friendly press during the primary and, as a result, has become emotionally gaffe prone. In the general, Reeves' once accommodating press friends will savage him over those gaffes in an effort to protect Miller.
In the end Reeves is not a liberal, will not have the press at his back and as a result his loose cannon personality will make him a weaker candidate in the general election than Bill Randall. Unfortunately, I am not convinced Reeves has the ability to gain control over his frustrations and even if he were get that control, I doubt he has time enough to rework his image.