Monday, October 03, 2011

Presidents and TV

I'm getting kinda tired of people complaining that Presidents have to be TV stars. Of course they have to be TV stars; every Presidential candidate must work well on the media of the day. Lincoln made good "stump" speeches; that's how candidates connected to the greatest number of people in his day. FDR, Truman and Eisenhower were all great on the radio.

Let's look backwards a bit at people's ability to talk on TV: Obama = great; GW Bush = not great (but better than Kerry or Gore); Clinton = very good; GHW Bush = better than Dukakis, not as nearly as good as Clinton; Reagan = great; Jimmy Carter = better than Ford ; Nixon = started out terrible on TV, hired experts and got MUCH BETTER. Are we seeing a pattern here? The ability to connect to people on TV is extremely important, and before the Democrats nominate another Kerry or Gore or Dukakis, they really need to keep this in mind.

It'll be interesting to see who can capitalize on Internet exposure in the future, although Obama does that quite well too.

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