Whose Looks Will Help, Whose Will Hurt?

Since the JFK-Nixon election, the better looking candidate is 5-0 in elections featuring non-incumbents (Nixon/Humphrey is kind of a toss up, but I’m giving the edge to him: JFK (’60), Nixon (’68), GHWB (’88), GWB (’00), and Obama (’08) all were better looking than their opponents.  One can’t deny that we live in a superficial society, and looks do help or hurt candidates in elections, particularly presidential ones.  Consider this an off the beat, “open line Friday,”  in Rush terms, type of diary: I’d like to know people’s opinions on how our candidates looks will help or hurt them, and I have created a five point scale: (-2), (-1), (0), (+1), and (+2).  I am particularly interested in the opinions of women, since most of our candidates are men and I value their opinion more on this issue because men can judge looks but women have a window into sex appeal that (most) of us guys don’t.  The numbers are self-explanatory, with (0) being neutral.   I

Jeb Bush: Score – (0); Jeb’s looks won’t help or hurt him; he’s not as good looking as his older brother, who was more rugged and also less “geeky” looking; if he gains weight it could hurt him.  With extra weight he comes across as a “chubby Irish guy.”

Mike Huckabee: Score – (0); Huckabee also falls in the category of “won’t help or won’t hurt.”  What interests me about this guy is that almost all movement conservatives don’t like him (we were almost all supporting Fred Thompson in 2008) but he does well conservatives overall.

[mc_name name=’Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’P000603′ ]: Score (+1); Rand is a good looking guy (+2), but does not express charisma on TV, coming a cross as a libertarian proffesor, which is why I deducted a point.

Ben Carson: Score (+1); good looking guy, is better looking than Obama; depending on how he comes across in the debates I could see this rising to a (+2)

Scott Walker: Score (-1); I would have scored him a (0) but he needs to improve his charisma on TV; like [mc_name name=’Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’P000603′ ] I deducted a point.

[mc_name name=’Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’C001098′ ]: Score (-1); not much to say here.  I ranked him a generous (0) in looks, but deducted a point for his “mean” demenor, which is less likely to win converts than more “sunny” conservatives (Reagan was a “sunny” conservative and I include Perry, Rubio, and Huckabee* in this category, Huchabee get a star because he’s only really a conservative on social issues)

[mc_name name=’Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL)’ chamber=’senate’ mcid=’R000595′ ]: Score (+2); I dedutced a point for his hair (Rogaine, brother, works like a charm), but added it back for his surefire on-camera charisma.  His good looks and charisma helped him win a landslide (+20) victory in a crucial swing state.

Rick Perry: Score (+2); the best looking candidate in the field with Texan charm to boot, reminiscent of W.  I was a big Perry supporter in ’12 and he’s currently in my top-3, along with Rubio and Walker but let’s hope for no “oops” moments this time around

Bobby Jindal: Score (-2); I like the guy a lot plitically so I’m not going to comment much on this superficial thread but let’s just say he’s not our best looking candidate

Chris Christie: Score (***); I am not going to score Christie – I know what you’re thinking – obvious (-2) – BUT his size and personality could creating an image in his favor.  Tony Soprano had a pretty popular show, and everyone has that large charming uncle, so I think his looks are a complete WILD CARD, dispite his size.

Carly Fiorina (+1): better looking than Hillary

John Kasich (0): not much to say here

Rick Santorum (-2): also deducted a point for his “mean” demeanor.


(+2) Rubio, Perry

(+1) Carson, Paul, Fiorina

(0) Bush, Kasich, Huckabee

(-1) Walker, Cruz

(-2) Jinal

(***)  Christie