washington, dc

The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

A Makeover for 2016 Slogans

Washington Post political/pop culture writer Hunter Schwarz takes a look at some of the presidential candidates’ slogans for 2016 and offers some observations, both wry and perceptive.
Schwarz likens Republican Ben Carson’s “Heal. Inspire. Revive” to a slogan for “a spa or a multi-level marketing company that sells energy drinks.” Perhaps a cut to the chase is needed here. Given Carson’s somewhat low name-recognition, maybe preface his slogan with “Think Ben Franklin and Kit Carson, Oh, and Here’s Some Nice Words.”
For Carly Fiorina’s “New Possibilities. Real Leadership,” add, “– Not Much to Say, but a Couple of Cliches should Do.” Ted Cruz’s “Reigniting the Promise of America” sounds hackneyed (How do you ‘reignite’ a ‘promise,’ anyway?). How about “Resurrecting the Spirit of Joe McCarthy,” which is more on point.
Regarding Marco Rubio’s “A New American Century,” Schwarz enthuses, “Rather than just promising four or eight years of peace and prosperity, he’s promising 100. What a deal!” Better still, Rubio’s campaign could add “OK, The New American Century is 15 Years Old, But You Can Still Vote for the Youngest-looking Wing-Nut.”
Then there’s Rand Paul’s “Defeat The Washington Machine. Unleash The American Dream,” which Schwarz feels has a little moxie. To punch it up with a little more veracity, however, it could be replaced by “Ayn Rand in a Trojan Horse.”
With respect to Democrats, Schwarz credits the slogan of Bernie Sanders: “A Political Revolution is Coming” with at least being “on-brand.” For Hillary Clinton’s “Everyday Americans need a champion. I want to be that champion,” Schwarz notes:

So it’s not her official slogan, but it’s a sentence she used in her announcement video…In lieu of a slogan, it’s what people are using…While it basically sums up what all elections are about, it uses the phrase “everyday Americans,” which we’ve established isn’t a phrase actual “everyday Americans” actually use, and it’s self-centered. Even though candidates are the entire reason for their campaigns, they’re supposed to pretend they’re not, by saying things like “we” and “us” instead of “I” and “me.”

Point taken. But maybe what is really needed here is a party-centric slogan that all Democrats can run on. For that, TDS suggests a meme from one of our bumper stickers:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.