The John Kerry campaign, after months of struggling to find a theme that will resonate with voters, has finally decided upon a slogan that they think will lift him to the White House. “That John Kerry, vote for him,” Kerry cried, referring to himself, at a recent event at a Virginia manufacturing plant.
“You should have heard the crowd roar,” said Kerry’s campaign manager, Hal Dudzinski. “We knew then we’d landed upon something. The ‘Let America be America again’ just wasn’t sticking to the ribs of the electorate. We dropped the ‘That John Kerry’ part because it was too wordy for the average Joe. ‘Vote for him’ has a simplicity, a straightforwardness that reflects John Kerry’s character.”
The Bush camp reacted quickly in a rare show of interest in the Kerry campaign, deciding to turn Kerry’s new catchphrase against him. Indeed, later that night in a speech Bush gave before the Republicans Who Have Money to Burn coalition, the phrase “Don’t vote for me,” was repeated by the president six times.
“Each time he said, ‘Don’t vote for me,’” observed Bush press secretary Greg LaTouche, “the crowd just went wild. You should’ve seen it. We knew then that we had the goods on Kerry, the slogan that will penetrate the swing voter with clarity and definitiveness.” Clarity and definitiveness, added LaTouche, “are two character qualities normally associated with the president.” Dudzinski countered that Bush’s new slogan, “Don’t vote for me” was a “reactionary reaction. Can’t the president think up anything on his own?”
Dudzinski added that the Kerry campaign wasn’t going to change their new theme “by adding a ‘please’ or a ‘really.’ We’re not budging. We’ve already got bumper stickers and placards in production.”