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For a presidential candidate one of the best ways to communicate directly with the electorates is to have effective campaign posters. There is no doubt that people respond to posters. A good poster, like Bill Clinton's of 1996, creates a positive impact and a bad poster, like those of George H. W. Bush and his rival Michael Dukakis of 1988, does the opposite. A good poster should create an iconic image, that as Robert Hariman and John Lucaites, in their study of iconic photographs, state can be:
"widely recognized and remembered, are understood to be representations of historically significant events, activate strong emotional identification or response, and are reproduced across a range of media, genres, or topics.”According to semiotician Roland Barthes the electoral photograph functions like a mirror to the viewer and “offers to the voter his own likeness, but clarified, exalted, superbly elevated into a type” through which the viewer is “invited to elect himself.” Traditionally an idealized portrait follows a grammar which typically is structured around three-quarters poses, conveying a certain aura of leadership quality to the person being depicted. In this grammar, the subjects look away from the viewer with a gaze that does not acknowledge their presence, suggesting authority, accomplishment, and imagination — someone who is leading toward prosperity and prgress.
A good poster like that of Andrew Jackson's poster of 1828, Zacharias Taylor of 1848, Ulysses Grant of 1868, William Jennings Bryan of 1896, and the best of them all; that of Theodore Roosevelt of 1901, should be easy to read, well balanced and aesthetically pleasing. A positive and powerful typography in a poster that prominently features the candidate's portrait and distinctly state the candidate's name and the main message of the campaign for what the candidate hopes to accomplish during his mandate is a definitive must.
An accurate and honest slogan like; The Union Must be Preserved, of Jackson's poster of 1828, I Want You FDR, Stay and Finish the Job! of FDR's of 1944, or Leadership for the 60s of JFK's 1960, which would speak to people's anxieties and wishes and would capture the essence of the campaign is crutially important. Such slogans help people to easily remember why they are voting.
|At their convention of 1844, the Democrats called for the annexation of Texas and asserted that the United States had a “clear and unquestionable” claim to “the whole” of Oregon. By informally tying the Oregon boundary dispute to the more controversial Texas debate, the Democrats appealed to both Northern expansionists (who were more adamant about the Oregon boundary) and Southern expansionists (who were more focused on annexing Texas as a slave state). Polk went on to win a narrow victory over Whig candidate Henry Clay, in part because Clay had taken a stand against expansion, although economic issues were also of great importance.|
|Lewis Cass was the nominee of the Democratic Party for President of the United States in 1848.|
|Presidential Campaign. Zachary Taylor and Millard Fillmore|
Decidedly conservative on trade and economic issues, Harding favored pro-business government policies, allowing Andrew Mellon to push through tax cuts for the entrepreneur, stopping anti-business actions, and opposed rigidities introduced in the labour markets by organized labor. As for foreign affairs, Harding administration used the Fordney-McCumber Tariff to secure oil markets in the Middle East, especially in modern-day Iraq and Iran, and revised Germany's war debts downward through legislation, passed in 1923, known as the Dawes Plan. Harding also called for a naval conference with nine other nations to freeze naval spending in an effort to reduce spending.
After becoming ill with what was at the time attributed to ptomaine (food) poisoning, Harding had a heart attack and died quietly in his sleep.
In an intensely emotional speech in the 1948 Democratic Convention, Hubert Humphrey, mayor of Minneapolis and a candidate for Senate, argued that "The time is now arrived in America for the Democratic Party to get out of the shadow of states' rights and walk forthrightly into the bright sunshine of human rights." On July 14, the last day of the convention, the liberals won a close vote. The entire Mississippi delegation and half the Alabama contingent walked out of the convention. The rest of the South would back Senator Richard B. Russell of Georgia as a protest candidate against Truman for the presidential nomination.
Nearly two weeks after the convention, the president issued executive orders mandating equal opportunity in the armed forces and in the federal civil service. Outraged segregationists moved ahead with the formation of a States' Rights ("Dixiecrat") Party with Gov. Strom Thurmond of South Carolina as its presidential candidate. The States' Rights Party avoided outright race baiting, but everyone understood that it was motivated by more than abstract constitutional principles.
It has been argued that an American election is no game for men of little means and weak connections, as running for president of the United States is, in fact, a game for millionaires like President Obama and his rival, Mitt Romney, who are both Harvard educated millionaires.
However, I am sure that election posters are a great equalizer in this game and have become the most potent medium of political mass communication in the brave new age of Twitter, and a drastic shortening of the general attention span of electorates. I don't think that the first priority of a candidate is or should be to attract wealthy donors and fund-raisers to underwrite his or her campaign. To me the first priority should be to attract the talented graphic designers to a cause.
Here are some of the pro and against Romney-Ryan ticket posters .
|"No experiments!" Konrad Adenauer on a 1957 election campaign poster.|
| Ludwig Erhard. |
Bundesrepublik Deutschland, 1965
|So tomorrow you can live in peace, Foreign Minister Willy Brandt, Federal Republic of Germany, 1969|
|German, we can be proud of our country, Elect Willy Brandt|
|The better man must remain chancellor, Helmut Schmidt. Therefore, SPD,|
SPD poster for the 1976 election
|Foreign Minister, Domestic Green; Joschka Fischer|
|I am ready,|
|A new beginning, ,Angela Merkel , CDU|
|To create employment, requires courage to reform.Gerhard Schröder, SPD|
|For Peace: Against Blindly Following, Gerhard Schröder, SPD|
Japanese Election Campaigns
|Yasuhiro Nakasone 中曽根 康弘|
|Noboru Takeshita 竹下 登|
|Taro Aso 麻生 太郎|
|Junichiro Koizumi 小泉 純一郎|
|Shinzō Abe 安倍 晋三|
|Yukio Hatoyama 鳩山 由紀夫|
|Yasuo Fukuda 福田 康夫|
- Susan Kismaric, American Politicians: Photographs From 1843 TO 1993 75–81 (1994); Vicki Goldberg, The Power of Photography: How Photographs Changed Our Lives, 75, 1991
- Robert Hariman and John Lucaites, No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs,Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy 27 - 2007
- Roland Barthes, Mythologies 91–92, Annette Lavers trans., 1972