Democrats & Liberals Archives

When's Kerry Going to Let Loose?

The latest issue of “Esquire” ran a feature titled “The Misunderestimation of John Kerry” by Charles Pierce. I’ll spare you the details (the article is a dull read), but I keep getting the feeling Kerry’s holding back and isn’t connecting with audiences and potential voters the way he needs to. Pierce goes on to mention how Kerry’s low-key demeanor has bested more charming and personable contenders like Dean and Edwards time and time again.

Can he pull it off one more time against a (some would say) likable incumbent?

"...Kerry has a serious likability problem, with many voters seeing him as cold, aloof and distant, according to focus groups, recent polls and election analysts" says a May 3rd article by the The Washington Times.

In the story, it mentions that swing-voters polled about their feelings regarding Kerry perceived him as "distant" and as someone who looks "sad" and who rarely smiled or laughed.

"Part of what (the swing voters) want to see in a president is someone who they would invite into their living rooms at night, someone who is likable," said Pollster Frank Lutz.

Is this why Kerry and Bush are still neck and neck even though Dubya's approval numbers keep plummeting? Could it be something as simple as likability? Will the supposed perception that Kerry is unapproachable push the undecideds towards Nader?

We've all seen the pictures of a young Kerry standing behind John Lennon. We know he went to 'Nam and saved lives. We know he's "electable." We know he's the solution for the country in this time of instability. We know that.

How and when will Kerry let his guard down? When will people feel like they've connected with him like they did with Clinton?

But most importantly - who in the hell approved this image?

Posted by Ivan at May 23, 2004 3:02 AM