The role of a campaign consultant

The 2020 presidential campaign is in full swing, with Donald Trump vying for a second term and Joe Biden hoping to unseat him on November 3.

For your paper, you will pick a side: you will take on the role of a campaign consultant working either for Trump or for Biden. The campaign has asked you to write a memo suggesting a winning slogan and a broader message for their candidate.

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Your memo must take the form of an argument. You must support your proposal through at least one piece of polling data that you will find through your own research. You will provide the campaign with 1) the slogan and broader message, 2) the data, and 3) the argument for why your broader message is a winning strategy against your opponent.

In working on this paper, I recommend you follow these steps:

1) Choose a candidate: Either Donald Trump or Joe Biden.

2) Explore public opinion data on an issue that benefits your candidate more than his opponent. Note that you must choose a policy issue (such as immigration, health care, the environment, etc.), not a personal trait (such as honesty, strength, experience, etc.). Youcan find polling data simply by using search engines on the internet (try searching for “polls on immigration” for example). Be sure the poll you find is from a reputable source (amainstream news organization or a polling firm with an established track record). You must cite the poll(s) you use (including a link to the web page that displays the results) in your works cited page so we can review them.

3) Based on the polling data, create a slogan for your candidate that summarizes their winning strategy, theme and message. Look at past campaign slogans for inspiration. For example, in 2016, Clinton’s slogan was “Stronger Together”, which highlighted her belief in equality across identity groups and efforts to strengthen the middle class. Trump’s slogan was “Make America Great Again,” which highlighted his desire to bring jobs back toAmerica and roll back progressive policies that stifle the country.

4) Explain your slogan in terms of your candidate’s broader theme and messaging, andexplain why the message is a winning one. Remember the points in lecture about what type of issue can be a winning issue. You must use those criteria in your explanation of the strength of your slogan and message.

Your paper should take the form of a memo to the campaign’s manager. It should have thefollowing structure:

  1. INTRODUCTION: What is the purpose of this memo?
    To make sure it comes across, I recommend you start your paper with this sentence:“In this memo, I argue that a winning slogan for the [Trump/Biden] 2020 campaigncould be ‘__________’. This slogan reflects the broader message ______________. I based this proposal on polling data showing that __________________.”
  2. SLOGAN AND MESSAGE: Based on the criteria laid out in lecture on Thursday 09/03, explain the strength of your slogan and message.
  3. POLLING RESULTS: Describe a poll result that supports your idea. Discuss who conducted it, what the sample was, the date it was administered, the question(s) it asked, and the results. Use the results to support your argument for why your slogan and message is a winning choice. You do not need more than one poll result, but you may use more than one if that helps your case.
  4. CONCLUSION: Briefly conclude your case. You might include a short discussion of whether your slogan is meant to appeal to some specific identity groups or specific areas of the country, and explain why.
  5. WORKS CITED: You must cite the polls you use, including the URL from where you accessed them. You do not need to include a figure from the polls. Cite any other materials on which you relied.

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