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January 1, 1952January 1, 1952THE CABLE BOX BALLOT: 60 YEARS OF PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN ADSFor as long as we’ve had television, we’ve had televised political ads. And the history of telivised campaigns is a history of popular candidate perception. Ads may not win a campaign outright, but they certainly help.
This presentation will walk you through some of the more memorable US presidential TV ad spots. You’ll see how the form has changed, and how big-hit ads can change the outcome of an election. So get clicking!

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Who would think a tiny box like this could change the direction of a nation?start [1]

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April 1, 1952April 1, 1952“Television will still account for a vast majority of the money spent on political advertising — billions this year, and 9 out of every 10 advertising dollars, strategists estimate.” Jeremy W. Peters, The New York Times (April 1, 2012)Even though the Internet is changing the tone of modern political campaigns, the TV campaign ad is still a vital part of any would-be candidate’s messaging system.
Countless studies show — the images presented in an ad greatly influence how the public views a candidate.

Darrell M. West, “Television Advertising in Election Campaigns,” Political Science Quarterly 109, no. 5 (1994).

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This presentation will show you some of the more notable ads in US
presidential campaign history. Watch the ads, read the backstories, and
figure out just what makes a candidate TV-worthy.

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November 4, 1952November 4, 19521952: IKE v. ADLAIThe 1952 contest between General Dwight D. Eisenhower and Illinois Gov. Adlai Stevenson was the first presidential contest to feature television ads. And Stevenson, a Democrat and decidedly ‘bookish’ candidate, refused to appear in TV spots, while Eisenhower pioneered a series of short “Ike Answers America” ads.

TV was very different in the 1950s, but the short, simple clips of a friendly Eisenhower answering common problems were just as effective then as they would be in modern races.

Watch both ads in the next two slides. Based on the images of each man as show in his TV spots, who would you vote for?
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TV CAMPAIGNS BEGIN WITH A WHIMPER

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November 5, 1952November 5, 1952"NEVER HAD IT SO GOOD," (EISENHOWER, '52)
http://youtu.be/lEINBjHHvHE

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November 6, 1952November 6, 1952"ENDORSEMENT (WOMAN)" (EISENHOWER, '52)
http://youtu.be/9XKBbPQXnrY


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November 3, 1964November 3, 19641964: LBJ v. GOLDWATERThere was never any doubt that President Lyndon Baines Johnson couldn’t beat Arizona Sen. Barry Goldwater in the 1964 election. After President John F. Kennedy’s ghastly death a year earlier, LBJ had the public’s sympathy well on his side.

But the sheeer size of the victory — 44 states, more than 61 perecent of the popular vote — indicated that something else was at play. And that something else just may have been LBJ’s controversial and haunting “Daisy” ad. Though the Democrats eventually pulled it from the air, we’ll show it to you here.

What do you think? Does the ad work? Or is its anti-nuclear message too heavy-handed to sway your vote?
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ONE EXPLOSIVE DAISY

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November 4, 1964November 4, 1964"PEACE LITTLE GIRL (DAISY)", (JOHNSON, '64)http://youtu.be/dDTBnsqxZ3k

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November 2, 1976November 2, 19761976: CARTER v. FORDFormer Georgia Gov. Jimmy Carter was a candidate made out of every advertising agent’s dreams. Earnest, plain-spoken — and a national unknown when he nabbed the Democratic nomination in 1976 — Carter would come to use his television spots as a way to frame popular conceptions of his identity.

His opponent, President Gerald R. Ford, was almost as big of an unknown, himself, assuming both the Vice Presidency and the Presidency after his predecessors in each office were forced to resign from their positions in disgrace.

Both men needed a positive spin to win in November. Ultimately, Carter’s happy-go-lucky, honest country boy ads helped turn the electorate towards his Southern populist charms.
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AN AD WILL NEVER LIE TO YOU

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November 3, 1976November 3, 1976"SOUTH", (CARTER, '76)http://youtu.be/vt2DfaV96DI

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November 4, 1976November 4, 1976"PEACE", (FORD, '76)http://youtu.be/jogttrDTlZM

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November 6, 1984November 6, 19841984: REAGAN v. MONDALETwenty years after the Democratic dominance of 1964, 1984 saw the Republicans ride to a 49 state slaughter at the polls.

President Ronald Reagan had this election in the bag from the beginning. But he was probably helped along by his expert ad campaigns, including this iconic and oft-cited spot preaching the dawn of “Morning in America.”

The sepia-hued ad, with its emphasis on family values and traditional Americana, helped convince voters that Reagan — not former Vice President Walter Mondale — was the way to go for a brighter tomorrow.

Watch the ad and decide: are you better off now than you were four years ago?
http://www.4president.org/images/1984.gifDAWN OF A NEW AD ERA

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November 7, 1984November 7, 1984"PROUDER, STRONGER, BETTER" (REAGAN, '84)http://youtu.be/NUKAkm8A9nM

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November 8, 1988November 8, 19881988: BUSH, SR. v. DUKAKISThe big news during the current election cycle is third-party funding of campaign ads. But the pratice isn’t new — President George H.W. Bush was one of the first candidates to benefit from the financial and media largese of an anonymous and powerful special interest group.

That group produced the now-infamous “Willie Horton” ad, tying Massachussetts governor and Democratic candidate Michael Dukakis to a controversial prison weekend furlough program that released a convicted murderer and led to an additional murder and gruesome sexual assault.

The Bush campaign rightfully denied ownership of the ad, but they produced a series of ads that levied similar charges against Dukakis.

Watch both ads here. How can third-party money influence a race?
http://faculty.virginia.edu/MyTube/fall2009_adspotlights/files/2009/09/Bush-Dukakis.jpgTHE REVOLVING DOORS OF CAMPAIGN FINANCE

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November 9, 1988November 9, 1988"WILLIE HORTON", (NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL, '88)http://youtu.be/EC9j6Wfdq3o

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November 10, 1988November 10, 1988"REVOLVING DOOR," (BUSH, '88)http://youtu.be/PmwhdDv8VrM

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November 6, 2012November 6, 20122012: OBAMA v. ROMNEYThe 2012 Presidential election is almost here. Take our ad-centric <a href="indexQuiz.html"> personality quiz </a> to see which candidate best suits your advertising aesthetic.
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