They will judge you regardless, so be bold and wear what suits you best.
Take color into consideration: red is bold and powerful, blue is calming and peaceful, and black is always slimming. Avoid bright oranges and yellows unless you are very dark complected, and opt for ‘conservative’ colors, like cream instead of neon pink.
Shoes – In the past few years high-dressing women in a variety of professions have been able to pull off more daring shoe choices, like pairing a bright red pump with a conservative black skirt-suit. Just make sure whatever you choose is comfortable enough for the activity you’re appearing for.
Long suit jackets give the illusion of height and give a woman more authority than short jackets.
What NOT to Wear:
Bouses or shirts that show cleavage.
Short skirts. Don’t use the ‘finger-tip’ rule – you’re not in high school anymore. Aim for an inch or two above the knee to an inch or two below the knee.
Too-high heels. Falling is embarrassing. Getting stuck standing for hours in pinchy heels is unbearably painful.
Believe it or not, pants are a lot trickier than skirts. If you can, try to wear skirts rather than pants, but of course that’s not always possible.
Upstaging Your Opponent
If you’re running against man – which you probably are – there are a few other optical illusions you can use to make yourself the more dominant candidate on the rare occasions you’re side by side.
The average female candidates are significantly shorter than the average man. If you find yourself on stage next to your opponent as you would be at the end of a debate, for example, make up for this height difference by standing a step or two closer to the audience than your opponent. Obviously this will look awkward if you’re inches apart, but if there are a few feet between you no one will notice that you’re actually closer to the front than the other candidate.
You can also take an educated guess at what your opponent will wear, and then wear a bolder outfit. Don’t go crazy, the idea is to look powerful, not loud.
Another stage trick is to make your ‘presence’ bigger. You can do this with a broad smile, a wider arm position and stance,
I hate when they do this to poor Michele. She looks like a dwarf!
Take a look at Michele Bachmann in this line up. Can you even see her? I’d recommend a red or blue suit, or else a red blouse under her jacket, taking a half step forward and taking a wider stance, with one foot a bit forward and hands on hips or waving so that she stands out more. I love the peep-toe shoes, obviously she chose reasonably low heels since she would be standing for a couple of hours fielding questions. As a side note, this jacket is a little boxy on her – female candidate’s shouldn’t shy away from a feminine figure, it would help Michele stand out in this crowd.
I didn’t say this. My husband did. And it’s a good observation. Mitt Romney is the candidate that sticks out as the one that ‘fits the mold’ – the mold that Republicans so desperately need to break out of. When stacked up against President Obama, he doesn’t offer much “change” or “hope” compared to his primary opponents. And his message is bound to be lost in the media’s death-by-a-thousand-paper-cuts methods of tearing down boring candidates, just as they did with John Kerry.
Republicans are perfectly poised to have a sweeping victory, if only they would nominate a fresh, new face (literally) instead of a middle-aged white businessman/politician.
Let’s take a look at Herman Cain.
He’s got a plan. And more importantly, he’s got a plan people can understand. None of this “I have a plan – I can’t explain it on TV because it’s an extensive 7463935 point plan that makes everything 362740 times more complicated to understand than it already is – but trust me, I’ve got a plan, and it’s fantastic” crap.
He’s a good communicator. With some professional support, he’ll be a great one.
He’s not a politician. Thank God.
He’s got a fantastic story. The man beat stage four cancer for crying out loud!
He’s black. That takes away Obama’s worn out race card. If you think he’s not planning to pull that puppy out this go around, you are gravely mistaken, my friend.
He’s not a politician. It hasn’t really happened yet, but if they get desperate and he seems like a big enough threat, Cain’s primary opponents will call it a sin that he’s never held a political office before.
He’s black. There are still bigots. Besides the crazies who are probably also felons and therefore not allowed to vote, there are old people who wouldn’t vote for a black man even if two black men were the only names on the ballot. They are dying off, thankfully, but unfortunately they vote more than any other age group. I’m hoping that most senior citizens are NOT those people.
Note that those cons are really only valid in the primary race, and become a moot point, for the most part, in a Cain v. Obama scenario.
It’s my personal hope that the GOP finally wrenches itself from it’s establishment fetish and jumps at the opportunity to join the 21st century.
For the past several election cycles, most especially 2008 and 2010, we have seen some of the nastiest political mudslinging in the history of our nation (and America has a looonghistory of slinging mud) – just check out this little Obama/Clinton tiff (one of many from 2008):
But this 2012 GOP primary holds the promise of something better.
Oh sure, things will get competitive toward the end of primary season when one by one candidates are picked off, Romney and Perry are doing a little friendly sparring, and God knows Obama’s going to get downright vicious – he already is! But these candidates – how many is it now, 8? 9? Where’d Gary Johnson come from?
Anyway, these guys are not out to slit each others’ throats. They are out to win an election. They are genuinely looking to set America back on track. I’ll be darned!
The candidates that debated in tonight’s Google/Fox News Channel debate looked and acted like a group of colleagues debating the issues and even having a good time doing it. They cracked some jokes, and even had some fun with the final question. They obviously have respect for one another, and – maybe it’s the Pollyanna coming out in me – I truly believe that these candidate will unite behind the Republican nominee, becoming ambassadors for a GOP victory in the general election.
That being said, I think that Romney and Cain certainly had a strong showing tonight. Romney knocked it out of the park rebutting Perry’s jabs, and Cain, well he’s just kind of awesome, and that really showed through in his responses.
Tonight’s debate, more so than any of the others thus far, though they have been cordial as well, was a fantastic example of debating done right.
Know your facts.
Know your plan.
Don’t be too serious.
Treat others as you would like to be treated.
Focus on yourself and your own platform.
If you want my actual thoughts on the candidates and their performance, however, here it is:
I personally believe Bachmann, Cain and Santorum are the most closely aligned to what Americans need and want in the next president of the United States.
Bachmann, for some reason, seems to be getting noticeably less airtime, in this debate and the last one. Am I imagining this? Someone please tell me if I am. What gives?
Yes, I admit that Perry and Romney have the right “look” and are middle-of-the-road enough to fit the boring, traditional presidential mold, but that will only hurt them in the primaries.
I would include Jon Huntsman in that category, but he’s so moderate he makes ‘real’ Republicans uncomfortable.
Ron Paul and Gary Johnson…well, America’s just not ready for that…but obviously we’re getting closer. Ron Paul could be a strong dose of exactly the right medicine, and God knows he’s got more political (and life) experience than anyone else on that stage (except maybe Newt Gingrich).
Oh yeah, I forgot about Newt! Maybe that’s because his voice and his subdued swept-to-the-side bangs haircut put me to sleep whenever he’s talking. I also really hate it when politicians use words like ‘programs,’ and Gingrich seems to be a big fan of ‘programs’ all over the place. It’s a distinctly Democrat concept and I’m repelled by that kind of language. And “we should have some sort of program” means “I don’t have an actual plan yet, but if I say ‘program’ it sounds like I might” to me.
The truth is we have several highly intelligent, experienced leaders to choose from. I’m pleasantly surprised, this is a big upgrade from the 2008 GOP field! Republican voters have a big decision ahead of them, as they (short of some crazy fluke leading to an Obama second term) essentially will be crowning the next president.
“I promise” we will return to our ‘What Is A Campaign Plan’ series tomorrow. <– Get it? That was a Johnson joke!