Barack Obama Is the Cool One; So What?

Illustration for article titled Barack Obama Is the Cool One; So What?

He makes three-pointers, sings Al Green tunes and has been deemed more likable overall than Mitt Romney. Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post asks whether it will actually make a difference at the polls.


Here’s a fundamental fact of the 2012 presidential race: President Obama is cool. Mitt Romney isn’t.

At first glance, the coolness gap between the two parties’ nominees would seem to favor President Obama. After all, who would you rather vote for: the coolest guy in school or Alex P. Keaton? (Yes, we are exaggerating. But, you get the point.)


That cursory glance, however, underestimates the political complexity of the “coolness” factor as it relates to President Obama and his bid for a second term this fall. The reality is that Obama’s “coolness” can (and will) be used against him by Republicans who will seek to paint him as all style no substance — someone who talks a good game but doesn’t deliver.

“If voters think on election day that Obama is the cool one, but Romney is the competent one, Obama will lose,” said Mike Murphy, a California-based Republican media consultant. “We are electing a president to get us out of tough economic times, not a prom king.”

Read Chris Cillizza's entire piece at the Washington Post.

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