Commentary

Tracking Holiday Cheer From The Politicians

The holiday season, in the business world, is often the time you send cards and gifts to your customers and thank them for hanging in there with you. I was interested in seeing what kind of holiday cheer was sent out be email this year. In fact, as I was writing this piece, there was so much just in the political sector that I've decided to make this a two-parter. Here is what I found:

On the political front, it was interesting to note that only Republicans sent out email messages with the word "Christmas" in the subject line.

Mitt Romney sent out an email with the subject line "Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays" that contained a thank-you to his supporters and a note on what family meant to him.

John McCain, using the same subject line, told a "heart warming" Christmas as a POW story. John Cornyn, Senator from Texas, had a succinct "Merry Christmas" in the subject line of his holiday greeting. And Rudy, apparently forgetting he was once Mayor of New York City, sent out his Christmas support of our troops with a video of Santa Claus embedded in it. Interestingly, the word Hanukkah only appears in two holiday greeting messages, both for women: Kathy Seei, who is a Texas Republican running for Congress, used "Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and Happy Holidays!" as her subject line, and North Carolina Congresswoman Sue Myrick invited us all to "Join Sue December 17th for her Christmas / Hanukkah Party!" How Rudy missed the Hanukkah connection is a mystery.

The most bizarre holiday message came from the Fred Thompson campaign. With a title of 12 Days of Christmas, instead of asking us to remember the troops, or our families, Fred's email asked you to remember him and add him to your gift-giving list. Fred would like any old $1,000 you have laying around to help him pay for gas during this holiday season: "Your gift will be the difference in how the primary season starts for Fred. His campaign needs the resources to travel, run ads on TV, host rallies and contact voters directly. The contribution you make to Fred's campaign will buy tangible things that will go a long way towards making Fred's bid for the White House successful. Your gift of $1,000 will make a day on the bus possible. $500 today will allow the campaign to run four television ads in Iowa. Even your gift of $50 or $25 can make a big difference in what we're doing."

The Democrats, on the other hand, avoided the word Christmas (as well as Hanukkah) in their subject lines like the plague. Hillary had an email called Wrapping Paper, in which she did wish people Merry Christmas in the body text, and included an embedded video of her putting "presents" like "Middle Class Tax Cuts" and "Universal Health Insurance" under the tree.

Obama, in an email with the subject line "Our Tree" talked about being home with the family for the holidays (no mention of the troops).

John Edwards' holiday email was "Special Moments," which highlighted a video by Jackson Brown and Bonnie Raitt, with no mention of Christmas at all.

And no politician mentioned Kwanzaa. In fact, I was curious if any email marketer did:

One. The Epicurious Web site sent out an email with Kwanzaa menu ideas.

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