Only one more day of campaigning and then 24 straight news hours of rehashing until the election. And yet, as I look back on this campaign, I can't think of a time when campaigning for our vote has taken such a unique and weird turn. Because ubiquitous seems to be an understatement for messages and how we get them these days, it seems like both candidates are doing their best to keep up with everything that goes on.
Can you remember a time when candidates for the President of the United States showed up on Oprah, Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, Extra, and Mike and Mike in the morning all in one season? I actually went to both candidates web sites to check out their messages (knowing they'd be heavily skewed in their favor, but it's nice to see what each side thinks of themselves and their opponents.)
It's not just that, but acting has apparently become a mainstay as well. Both Obama and McCain have had to have their comedic chops ready for some self-depricating humor.
Gone are the days of just kissing babies at rallies and taking a train ride across the U.S. These tactics are not forgotten, but when vying for the vote of the younger generation, new ways are tested. Yes, we know. Young people don't vote. But there are two things here: 1) actually they have lately. Voter turnout for youngsters has risen for both the 2004 and 2006 elections--a first time in history for two election periods with increases. 2) Older people like to be considered young and hip too. The Internet is not so foreign and widespread media is even less of a risk, so reaching out in the middle of regularly scheduled programs is not so out there.
This is only the beginning. Think about tonight. On the eve of the election, Obama and McCain are going to be speaking with . . .Chris Berman. The Swami is interviewing both candidates during halftime of Monday Night Football. Will it work? Maybe, maybe not. But when the product your shilling is yourself, more brand awareness isn't a bad thing.
One good thing: After tomorrow we're back to our regularly scheduled programs.