Thoughts on South African and international politics and culture

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Kerry makes the intelligent choice
True to form, Kerry has selected Senator John Edwards as his running mate in the upcoming presidential elections. His selection, although not neccessarily the safest one, was the intelligent choice amongst the VP candidates. Edwards' energy, drive and Southern charm are the perfect foil to Kerry's lacklustre, aloof Ivy League image that he is struggling to shake. In a campaign that already has had both sides pointing 'Washington Insider' fingers at each other and questioning each other's political ethics, Edwards' boy-next-door campaign message decrying the "two Americas" - the rich and the rest - is the perfect addition to Kerry's armoury. Added to this, his appeal in Southern states bolsters Kerry in areas where he is weak, and Edwards will be a key asset in gaining the swing vote in battleground states.

According to Kerry, "John understands and defends the values of America. He has shown courage and conviction as a champion for middle class Americans and those struggling to reach the middle class. In the Senate, he worked to reform our intelligence, to combat bioterrorism, and keep our military strong. John reaches across party lines and speaks to the heart of America — hope and optimism."

Interesting choice of words at the conclusion of the quote; "hope and optimism". Those were the exact words used to define Reagen's presidency so emphatically in the past few weeks. The hypothesis here is that Kerry is trying to sabotage Bush's use of Reagan nostalgia in his election campaign by holding onto the key principles in his own message. Whether this will hold or not we'll have to wait and see, but an interesting first shot as the Kerry-Edwards team.