The Democrats have a distinct advantage when an election is boiled down to which personality is more electable (especially on a national stage).  Not because Democrats are inherently more like able (not really knowing the candidates on a personal level, I don’t dare even speculate).  No, because for the Democrats its all about personality.  Without going into an in depth study (because postulating on politics is a hobby, not a profession for me), a case in point would be this year’s Democratic primary battle between Clinton and Obama.

Hillary Clinton was a personality darling because she was a trailblazer for women in politics and other high-profile careers.  It helped (mostly) that her husband was the President of the United States.  Enter Barack Obama.  Now, here is some one who is a minority race in America.  He is affable, articulate, and new to the national political stage (a change in politics-as-usual in Washington is something that Democrats often say they want without ever being able to deliver because in their version of politics necessarily involves seniority – eerily similar to teachers’ contracts in the country’s public schools).  This Obama guy could deliver us from our own malaise, not to mention he has many (if not all) of the characteristics of a victim that we fight so hard to elevate in our cause.  Sorry, Hillary, you’re just not what the cult of personality ordered for the Democratic Party.

Fast forward to the last few weeks before the election.  Obama (with the aide of his many popular personality allies) continues to chip away at McCain’s personality as unsuitable for the presidency.  His tactic is not unsuccessful, but nor is it particularly honest.  By using the measure of personality as a qualification for being president, there are number of outstanding citizens that we know in our own neighborhoods that would beat both of the men running for president.  By focusing on Obama’s personality the Democrats have invited the current attacks on his associations with Bill Ayers, Jeremiah Wright, Tony Rezko, and others.  The good news for Obama is that the Democrats are very well-equipped to distract the public from those personality flaws. 

McCain, and any Republican, faces an uphill battle any time they enter into a contest for a national position.  A Republican candidate actually has to be perfect, while a Democratic candidate only has to be like able.

MW

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