As more than one news outlet pointed out yesterday, Hillary Clinton’s 3 a.m. ad was voted the “Best TV Spot” of the 2008 cycle in a poll of Politics magazine readers. The spot won the approval of 31 percent of our readers in the internet survey conducted by Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates.
But it’s worth noting that Clinton strategist Mark Penn wasn’t even in the ballpark in the “Best Political Strategist” category. David Axelrod won that one in a runaway with 54 percent, followed by Obama campaign manager David Plouffe at 22 percent.
The poll was conducted as part of the first annual Politics magazine Reed Awards. Our insiders were polled on the best and worst of the 2008 campaign season, and picked the cycle’s top strategists and the best run down-ballot campaigns.
No surprise on most of our reader’s picks. Barack Obama’s “Change We Can Believe In,” won in the Best Slogan category. And our readers voted Sen. John McCain’s selection of Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin the cycle’s “Most Surprising Event.”
Palin also took the honors in the category of “Best Villain” of the ’08 cycle, winning the vote of 23 percent of our readers. Turncoat Sen. Joe Lieberman came in second at 17 percent, followed by former Sen. John Edwards at 16 percent.
Down-ballot, our readers voted North Carolina Democrat Kay Hagan’s U.S. Senate bid the “Best-Run Senate Campaign” in ’08. Hagan knocked off incumbent Sen. Elizabeth Dole. And the reelection campaign of Indiana Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels took the “Best-Run Governor’s Campaign” category. Daniels won by double-digits in a state Obama was able to wrest away from Republicans for the first time since 1964.
Read the full poll results here. And check out the winners of the 2009 Reed Awards here.
Shane D’Aprile is Senior Editor at Politics magazine. email@example.com