Voters Leery of Negative Campaigns - Black Enterprise

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Black Enterprise Magazine September/October 2018 Issue

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Ever since Gov. Sarah Palin sought to link Sen. Barack Obama to Bill Ayers during a campaign speech a couple of weeks ago, the 1960s radical and tenured University of Chicago professor has been in the news just about as much as the failing economy. Obama has called Ayers actions as a Weatherman “detestable” and “despicable.”

Considering the turbulent credit markets, voters are more concerned about their retirement savings and decreased credit availability than with Ayers. According to the University of Wisconsin Advertising Project, Sen. John McCain ran mostly negative ads between Sept. 28 and Oct. 4. He just might be paying for it in the polls. McCain is trailing Obama by 10 points according to a Washington Post-ABC News Poll released today.

Voters do not look favorably on negative attack campaigns, reads a recent poll by SurveyUSA. Results show that 73% of people said it is inappropriate for candidates to put out negative ads against their opponent while 25% said it is OK.

Furthermore, the poll reported that negative campaigns affect voter’s decisions in different ways:
-    34% say it makes them not want to vote
-    26% say it makes them want to vote even more
-    40% say it does not affect them

During a stump speech a little over a week ago in Florida, Palin said that Obama pals around with “terrorists.” Her statement was made in the present tense and “terrorists” was plural, suggesting that he presently affiliates with more than one terrorist.  She also neglected to chastise audience members who shouted racial epithets about Obama. Presidential contender McCain did not denounce her words or deeds.

McCain’s campaign also released negative ads tying Barack Obama to the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, an organization that has been charged with voter fraud.The ad accuses ACORN of forcing banks to issue risky home loans. Maude Hurd president of ACORN refuted the ad as false.

“John McCain and the Republicans are desperately trying to shift the blame for the economic crisis they caused with a philosophy of deregulation and indifference to homeowners,” says Hurd in a statement. “All the grainy footage and creepy music in the world can’t cancel out some simple, basic facts, and the facts about the economy are not on John McCain’s side.”

Obama has also participated in the mud slinging. He released an ad about McCain’s involvement in the Keating Five, an investigation that linked McCain to the savings and loan scandals of the 1980s.

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Marcia Wade Talbert

Marcia is a multimedia content producer focusing on technology at Black Enterprise Magazine. In this capacity she writes and assigns stories to educate readers about social media; digital integration; gadgets, apps, and software for business and professional development; minority tech startups; and careers in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). In 2012, she received two Salute to Excellence Awards from the National Association of Black Journalists and was recognized by Blacks in Technology (BiT) as one of the Top 10 Black achievers in the tech arena for 2011 at SXSW in Austin, Texas. She has spoken about technology on panels for New York Social Media Week, at The 2012 Rainbow/PUSH Wall Street Summit, as well as at Black Enterprise’s Entrepreneurs Conference and Women of Power Summit. In 2011, chose her as one of 28 People of Color Impacting the Social Web, and through crowdsourcing she was listed as one of BlackWeb2.0's/HP's 50 Most Notable African American Tastemakers in Social Media and Technology for 2010. Since taking on the role of Tech editor in September 2010, she has conceived and produced five cover stories on Technology and/or STEM and countless articles, videos, and slideshows online. Before joining as an interactive general assignment reporter in 2008, she freelanced with Black Enterprise beginning in 2003 while working as the technical editor at Prepared Foods magazine. There she further honed her writing skills and became an authority on food ingredients, including ingredients used in food fortification and enrichment. Meanwhile, her freelancing with Black Enterprise and helped her stay current on issues pertaining to the financial and business welfare of African Americans. As a general reporter for Black Enterprise she attended and reported on the Democratic and Republican National Conventions, where she interviewed Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to President Barack Obama and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder. Marcia has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture with an emphasis in food science from the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Science degree in journalism from Roosevelt University in Chicago. En route to her secondary degree, she served as the editor-in-chief of the Roosevelt University Torch, a weekly, student-run newspaper. An avid photographer and videographer, Marcia is one of several employees at BLACK ENTERPRISE who interned for the publishing company as a college student. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, a food scientist; her seventeen-month-old daughter; and “The Cat”, but still considers Chicago home.