Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Just what will persuade voters - more personal stories from the Obamas

Here is the White House's brilliant idea of how to help struggling Democratic politicians who are trying to persuade voters that they deserve another shot at addressing our economic woes - send out Barack and Michelle to tell stories about their favorite subject...themselves.
President Barack Obama — facing a buzz saw of bad news — plans to shift his tone on the economy, ditching dry Explainer-in-Chief policy lectures for a more emotional, more personal approach emphasizing his own family’s hardships, administration officials tell POLITICO.

Exhibit A: Obama’s Wednesday trip to Cleveland — where Obama will follow up a pointed attack on House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) with a retelling of the economic struggles faced by his family during his childhood in Hawaii.

The president has no choice but to go gut-level. Not much else seems to be working.

“I think we’ve lost the president’s personal narrative in the story he’s been telling about the economy,” a senior administration official conceded Tuesday. “We recognize that. And you are going to see a change.”

Among the new rhetorical touchstones: A nod to his grandparents, who worked hard to put him through private school in Hawaii, and his mother, a single mom who was briefly forced to go on food stamps during his childhood. He also plans to invoke the struggles of Michelle Obama’s late father, Frasier Robinson, who supported his family on a modest salary as a Chicago water works employee despite years of failing health.

Obama will “reiterate his story and that of his family as a way of talking about the values of America and the idea of how the country was built” and repeat those themes “throughout” Wednesday’s speech, the official said.
Remember when Obama's confident reply to Democrats worried about a repetition of 1994's Democrat debacle at the polls was that the difference was that now they have him? I guess this is what he meant. So voters upset that the Democrats squandered over $800 billion on a stimulus that didn't work and then spent the rest of the time on their other priorities like a health care plan that is going to be raising the rates for millions of people right before the election are supposed to be impressed by stories from several decades ago about how hard things were for the Obama's families? Yeah, that should work.


pumping-irony said...

Well, Barack's typical white grandma had to work hard to put him thru private school (Private school? I thought the public schools were the best thing in education!) and his mom was on food stamps. And Michelle's dad worked hard to support the family on a modest income.

Boo hoo. Now, they take 2 vacations a month, enjoy lavish parties and dinners and spend like Nancy Pelosi on a botox high, fiddling while Rome (and the rest of the country) burns. Yeah, sounds like a winner to me.

Freeven said...

“I think we’ve lost the president’s personal narrative in the story he’s been telling about the economy,” a senior administration official conceded Tuesday.


If there is any logic in identifying this as the source of the Democrats' woes, it eludes me. I understand the urge to deny that their policies are the problem; that's politics and human nature. So advancing the idea that it's the message, not the policies, that have failed makes some sense from a PR point of view. But are they really thinking the economy continues to tank, but if we just get Obama to talk about himself more everything will be okay?

Just, wow.

Lawler Walken said...

So his grandparents worked really hard and his Mom struggled and Michelle's Dad carried a load to support his family. They sound like good people, trying to do the right thing. But what's missing is exactly how hard Michelle and Barack have ever had to work to get by. Which I guess is the point, right? That the rest of us are supposed to tote that barge and lift that bale so Barack and Michelle can keep on keeping on with the good life they're living so large right now. Just like Papa Robinson and Grandma did.

See, that's his problem. A lot of us know what it's like to be the one working the double shifts to get by or taking the bus to work to save on gas money. We're living that reality now. So yeah, we can relate to Grandma. Not really sure how that helps him though.

LarryD said...

Well, the Democrats are all about feelings. They gave up on rational argument long ago.

More evidence of how disconnected they are, that they think this has any chance of working.