Mayfield Campaign Milks Company Colors for Publicity, Votes

Advertising for Mayfield Dairy, a dominant brand in the East Tennessee milk market, has a yellow and brown color theme . So does advertising for Scottie Mayfield’s run for the 3rd District The only difference, reports the Chattanooga TFP, is that candidate Mayfield’s logo lacks the picture of a brown cow’s face that is part of the Mayfield Dairy logo.
Experts said the campaign brochures, bumper stickers and posters signal Mayfield’s efforts to capitalize on his career as the pasteurizing plant’s bow-tied spokesman.
“I don’t think we considered anything else,” Mayfield campaign strategist Tommy Hopper wrote in an email. “It made sense for all the obvious reasons.”
Those reasons — homespun name recognition and the happy vibes associated with milk and ice cream — may come in handy when voters compare Mayfield’s views with Fleischmann’s, assuming they’re able to do so.
..On Friday, the 49th day of the campaign, Mayfield’s website included links to donate and volunteer but showed no trace of the candidate’s political views, except for the phrase, “Republican for Congress.” At a recent campaign fundraiser, when asked if he disagreed with any of Fleischmann’s congressional votes, Mayfield replied, “Not really.”
Fleischmann responded at his own fundraiser a day later.
“There are a few people who want to be congressman,” he told a roomful of donors, “and it’s always very nice that they seem to keep confirming my voting record and all the things I do.”
Bruce Oppenheimer, a political science professor at Vanderbilt University, said the Mayfield name likely packs more punch than Fleischmann’s, but that may not translate into victory.
“It’s a primary, so you’ve got to give Republicans a reason to vote for you as opposed to the current incumbent,” Oppenheimer said. “It may not be enough to just say, ‘I’m somebody you know because I’ve produced a good product that you like.'”

In speeches, he downplays politics and says his congressional qualifications come from managing 1,700 employees at the dairy empire’s peak — and beginning in 2007 cutting more than 250 jobs as milk prices declined.
“My 40 years of experience in business and my no years of experience in politics actually will help me be a good congressman,” Mayfield told supporters last week. “That’s kind of my reason for doing it.”
Still, Mayfield’s livelihood could provide a fertile line of attack for Fleischmann and other Republican challengers. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, an average gallon of whole milk cost $3.52 in February, up 32 cents compared to two years ago. At area grocery stores, Mayfield milk often costs at least a dollar more than its competitors’ product.
“Scottie has nothing to do with setting milk prices,” wrote Hopper, a former Tennessee Republican Party chairman. “I would hope the campaign is about the future of the country, not false negative attacks on a good man’s character.”

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