It’s a good start. White chose the right message–improving education. Perry is vulnerable. Education advocates believe that standards have been lowered during the Perry years. The issue plays to White’s base but it also crosses party lines. Republicans in the suburbs and in rural areas care about public schools.
As a piece of film, however, the spot leaves something to be desired. The scenes of school children in classrooms are extremely predictable; how about closing with an upbeat scene of student graduating? It was important for White to appear in person and speak in his own voice. (Has anybody noticed that Perry’s spots have been all voice-over; Perry never delivers his own messages? Is this is an indication that his team is worried that he is overexposed?) White delivers his lines well and seems comfortable in front of the camera, except that his eyes occasionally get a little busy, like someone hawking his wares on late-night television. Perry’s TV team excels in creating dynamic spots that create momentum. White’s opening salvo was low-energy by comparison, but the tag line–“a governor for Texas’s future”–is spot-on.