The Big Pitch: If Warren Beatty really wants to be president, how should he position himself?

Ryan Donovan

Ryan Donovan

Ryan Donovan

Text100, San Francisco

Given that many people view him as a has-been actor with limited

talent, Beatty’s primary objective should be building

credibility. This could well be a difficult task. Will the

American public ever take a man who once dated Madonna seriously?

As for potential tactics, I’d recommend that he develop a

cohesive issues-driven platform that clearly articulates what he

offers and also that he start campaigning. An old-fashioned

whistle-stop campaign would cost a fortune, but would do a lot to

put a touch of humanity on his fading Hollywood stardom. People

would likely listen to what he has to say just because of the

Hollywood connection (or at least for an autograph).

Kristen Wolf

Fenton Communications, Washington, DC

This movie sounds very familiar to me - it’s the Ronald Reagan

story for a new era. Here’s the plot: an actor from Hollywood

takes the political scene by storm, overcomes staggering odds and

becomes one of America’s best-loved presidents. Beatty has

already played a politician in the midst of a campaign in the

movies (Bulworth), and his wife Annette Bening was the

First-Lady-to-be in The American President. Practice makes

perfect, right? The simple fact is that Beatty doesn’t have to do

PR. He is PR.

Phil Noble

PoliticsOnline, Charleston, SC

Beatty already has the three essential ingredients to be a

credible candidate: money, name recognition and a message. But

can he run a credible campaign?

He can if he is truly different. How? Run the whole thing on the


Need a political party? Create one via the Web (Jesse Ventura

could give him some tips on how to do it). Beatty should also

limit contributions to dollars 100, with the exception of his own

monster check (he can ask Steve Forbes about that one). Voters

don’t hate politics or the issues; they hate the current rotten

system. How to avoid this? Run outside the system via the Net

Only a genuinely daring outsider like Beatty could pull it off,


Edward Furey

Spector & Associates, New York

Beatty’s real problem is being taken seriously, so he should dare

to be dull. In the ’exploratory’ stage, he should demonstrate

sophistication through speeches on college campuses and articles

for publications like Foreign Affairs. He should avoid ’trendy’

celebrity issues, and attempt to hold his own against experts on

CNN’s NewsHour. At some point, people will start saying, ’Hey,

this guy’s good.’ Beatty might also launch his formal campaign

with a more comprehensive healthcare plan than the other

candidates have presented so far.

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