When the Democratic National Convention kicked off, it seemed like the Democratic Party was spinning out of control. Berners were in open revolt, and many undecideds were flirting with the idea of voting for Jill Stein, in public, on C-SPAN.
With day one in the books, conservative pundits were having a field day chortling over Clinton’s calamity, and Donald Trump was positively lambasting “crooked Hillary.”
Then came Michelle Obama.
While some of the speeches in the first couple of days were pretty good, the first lady exploded onto the scene with a pitch perfect routine that nearly everyone in the audience connected with. Suddenly, it seemed like the DNC would turn the corner.
Then came day three.
Amid more discontent from Bernie Sanders supporters, including a very public walk-out, leaving the convention hall feeling very empty, day three of the convention did not bode well for the former secretary of state and hopeful presidential candidate.
Someone thought it would be a good idea to bring the mothers of men killed in altercations with police onto the dais. Once again, the GOP — and many independents and undecideds that Hillary must
have to win — were incensed. How could the prospective commander in chief, America’s top Executive, honor these people and say nothing about executed cops?
Former President Bill Clinton came out and tried to calm the anxiety with a folksy and fun trip down memory lane depicting his wooing and winning of Hillary. It hit all the right notes for some, while others were creeped out.
Then the president arrived on the stage. Like his wife on day two, Barack Obama saved the day for Hillary Clinton, bringing the party together and uniting what was, up to that point, a very contentious crowd, split almost evenly between Hillary delegates and raging Sanders supporters.
Perhaps the worst public relations snafu of the convention happened when Hillary was officially nominated. She wasn’t in the building, so newspapers had little or nothing to run that was fresh and new. Some went to a shot of Hillary on the big screen speaking from another location. Others went with, wait for it, Bill on the stage. Throughout this campaign, there’s been talk of the double-edged sword Bill Clinton represents for Hillary.
No one can campaign better for her, but no one will find it easier to upstage her either.
And now, in the historic moment when a major party nominated a woman for the very first time, many publications ran her husband on page one.
When the rubber meets the road, that’s on Hillary. It was her moment. She should have been there.
Ronn Torossian is one of America’s foremost Public Relations executives as founder/CEO of 5WPR, a leading independent PR Agency. The firm was honored as PR Firm of the Year by The American Business Awards, and has been named to the Inc. 500 List. Torossian is author of the best-selling "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results with Game-Changing Public Relations." For more of Ronn Torossian's reports, Go Here Now.
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