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Brown campaign throws early jab at Meg Whitman

March 12, 2010 |  9:02 am
Campaigns in the modern era are marked by quickly thrown up websites, embarrassing snippets of candid hand-held video, and the occasional demon sheep or two.

In short, a lot has changed since Jerry Brown last ran a statewide campaign. And so far, he has been slow to engage in the tête-à-tête and rapid-response electronic communication that has become a hallmark of campaigns in the Internet era.

Unlike GOP rivals Meg Whitman and Steve Poizner, Brown does not have a serious primary challenge. And he does not have the massive campaign staff of Whitman, or even the fully operational cadre of handlers and advisors employed by Poizner.

But this week, Brown's embryonic media operation opted to engage, taking a swipe at Whitman in the process. An e-mail sent to reporters Thursday night from Brown campaign spokesman Sterling Clifford -- devoid of campaign banners or fancy desktop publishing -- noted a new poll on the liberal blog Daily Kos that shows Whitman closing in on Brown in a hypothetical head-to-head matchup.

"In the past seven months Meg has moved two points closer to Jerry in a head to head matchup," Clifford wrote. "To get that two point improvement, the "Talk to Me' Whitman campaign has spent an unprecedented $45 million plus."

OK, hardly a knockout blow. More of an early jab -- but perhaps a foreshadowing of things to come.

Welcome to the race, Mr. Brown.

-- Anthony York