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Sun Feb 10, 2019, 10:04 AM

Comb your hair and stand up straight!

Remember when your mother gave you her advise about the importance of first impressions….you know, why you should comb your hair, wear clean clothes, stand up and smile when you are introduced etc?

In my work on local issues, I’ve learned that people, when learning about a new issue, form their opinions, pro or con rather quickly based on what they first hear. Once those opinions are formed, it is very hard to change them. With luck, given time, you can beat them over the head with talking points and new arguments as time goes on and maybe convert one or two.

As the various Democratic Candidates announce, we see the Republican operatives, and the other candidates’ organizations immediately hit the airwaves and internet to influence that initial impression with some negative thing or another. You know: Unlikable! Too Radical, Staff hates her, Too left wing, Once supported Goldwater, Refuses to call himself a Democrat, Takes money from big pharma, a little overweight!

I hope that at least those on the DU would take a minute or two to reflect on the total character of the various candidates before simply repeating the initial negatives and then waiting for the next one to come along. So far the list of Democratic Candidates has been astonishing in quality. Each has so many more positives than negatives, yet each announcement has been met with some picky little point that is meant to raise doubts about electability or good character.

In the past, the Democrats have jumped on the side of younger candidates with less experience as the lack of track record has diminished their negative baggage. (Carter, Clinton, Obama) It has turned out well in some cases and may be a way of countering the ability of the opposition to make those initial impressions stick.

Just saying.

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