At this point in the game, does campaigning still make a difference?

Less then 2 weeks before the US elections, does a POTUS candidate’s campaigning make a difference? Make that a positive difference?

It sometimes seems that the are more likely to hurt themselves then help. They aren’t saying anything new. It’s all been said over and over in the last few months. Unless someone has been sitting on an October surprise and is going to release it now, what can they say that will help them? At most, they are going to have daily appearances before crowds of hand picked people that are already supports. Is it time for them to sit down and shut up? Let their press releases, TV ads and endorsement announcements take it from here.

we were told today that many undecided voter’s don’t decide until the last 4 days.

that means nov. 1-4 are the days that you should go full on.

i can tell you at one unnamed pres. camp. headquarters there will be a full out press on those 4 days.

I met an undecided person a couple days ago. Campaigning might still earn her vote.

There’s also the Get Out the Vote efforts: OK, so some folks have made up their mind that they like you better than the other guy, but now, you have to make sure that those folks care enough about it to go to the polls.

A presidential candidate can also concentrate on campaigning where house or senate races are tight to help out fellow members of their party.

I think there is a fair number of people who don’t pay any attention to the campaign for months and then the week before the election they put on the tv and see whose winning. There will be some people who vote simply because the other people they know are voting a certain way, some will do a bit of quick studying and then decide. Not everyone is as voracious as some on these boards. :slight_smile:

I would think convincing even a few extra people to vote liberal or conservative would help in some of the really close House and Senate elections.

During the 1948 campaign, there were a lot of undecided voters. Polling was fairly primitive 60 years ago and they simply assumed the undecided would split in the same proportion as the decided and widely predicted a landslide for Dewey and a Chicago paper (the Trib, I think) actually printed a headline that claimed Dewey won in a landslide. Trouble is that in the last few days of campaigning, overwhelming numbers of voters decided to vote for Truman and he squeaked in.

They didn’t have advanced polls and few absentee ballots and campaigns didn’t span two years, so it could be quite different now. My wife and I voted absentee two weeks ago, the second time we voted for Obama (we vote in Illinois).

Here’s the famous photo of that event.

I have to admit I am curious to see Obama’s half hour show on Wednesday night.

Granted, I have already voted for him, but am still interested to see exactly how this “final” pitch to the American public is going to play.

A part of me is a bit concerned…could this backfire in some odd way?
I am sure the Republicans will slam every nuance 14 seconds after it finishes airing.

The other part of me says to chill and trust this will be a good thing.
My guess is that it will be Obama simply laying out his platform in a succinct and direct manner, hoping to get his message across to those still unsure whether to believe what they have been hearing in McCain ads.
For that reason, I think this kind of campaigning via a half hour infomercial might just be what many undecided voters need to hear - assuming they tune in to watch it.

Yes. Campaigning is very important. We’re drilling the early vote right now and encouraging folks to check into their registration status.
Hell, this is THE busy part of the campaign.

IIRC, in 1968, Humphrey almost toppled Nixon with some last minute campaigning. per “The Selling of the President”, 1968.

I voted too, but I’m also curious about this 30 minute spot. I have a feeling they are still polishing it.

It isn’t just about winning over the undecided voters. It’s also about getting the decided people to break from their typical Tuesday routine to go to the polls, stand in line, and actually vote. The last-minute campaigning will help inspire people to get out there.