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Sunday, January 15, 2006 

Selling Hope to Win Elections (Hackett/Brown race)

In my exchanges with RedHorse (Psychobilly Democrat) and George (Brewed Fresh Daily) over the "Can't we all just get along" diary. An interesting topic was hit upon. I think we were all trying to say something similiar about the current direction of the democratic campaign process . The way I worded it was "How do you sell hope?" Redhorse said something along the lines of "people are looking for relief, they need hope" George said something like "constituents want to be engaged". I think we are all looking for the same thing from our candidates - but we just don't know how to describe it in a precise manner. Maybe we even disagree when it comes down to the details - that is why it is so hard to accurately verbalize?

As a voter, what would be best way for a candidate to "sell hope to /give relief to /engage" you?

In Ohio, I think the main prospect for hope is the creation of new jobs. I am also interested in the progress health care reform and renewable energy could bring to Ohio. My husband tends to think relief comes in the form in getting rid of the corrupt establishment and moving far away from the Bush policies. These are decent ideas but - how do you sell them without boring the voters or making them think "I'll believe it when I see it"? These are not new issues and when put into campaign speeches, I suspect it is difficult to make them sound fresh and engaging. If you read any of Hackett, Brown or Dewine's ideas about them, they all seem dry. If thinking about the implications of these issues and how they relate to the larger picture is philosophical fluff. How does the candidate sell hope/relief/become engaging? Are we basically left to personal charisma?

Brown has a lifetime of working for the issues and a deep dedication to the people of Ohio. The very fact that Hackett does NOT have a history or a record makes him appealing. Just by being himself, he is fresh, he is change, even if the majority of his beliefs seem to be similiar to Browns (without the Congressional fights). I believe this may win him the race but I also believe that this is how we ended up with Bush (plus a little cheating). It is hard to judge a candidate without a record (risky too) and even though I enjoy Hackett, I cannot say he is better or worse than Brown. Just different. I do want to win though. So, I'm not firmly putting my foot in either camp until we get a little farther down the road. I think we are lucky to have either of them, they both have great strengths and if leveraged effectively against the Dewine campaign - both are easy winners. If not, they both lose.

What would be the best way to leverage these strengths?

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