Dress the Candidate

The primaries are in full swing and so is scrutiny of the candidates.  A few days ago I read an article criticizing candidates wearing blue jeans on the campaign trail.   The author asserted that no one over fifty should wear jeans.   It is a good thing that my daddy is no longer with us.  He was a cattle rancher and, although he was handsome in his suit and tie, jeans were his favorite attire until his death at age 93.

Not just jeans, but the article went on to assert that a dress shirt should never be worn without a tie!  I’m not sure what planet this author has been living on, but it certainly isn’t the planet I know.  What would Dmitry Medvedev and Tony Blair say about that?  They wore jeans, dress shirts with open collars and navy blazers to the White House.  I suggest this look for an upscale casual.

Ron Paul seems to be one candidate who adheres to the author’s criteria.   I’m sure a suit and tie has been Dr. Paul’s mode of dress all of his adult life; first in his medical practice followed by many years of serving in congress.

Rick Santorum seems to prefer wearing casual Dockers style trousers; a much more flattering style for him than jeans would be.  Now I would like to weigh in on the sweater vests that he is so fond of wearing.  If I were his image consultant, I would burn every one of them!   (Unfortunately, I have not heard my phone ringing on that front.)

Mitt Romney often wears jeans with dress shirts open at the neck.  The plaid and checked shirts he chooses are casual while giving a professional casual look.  I would prefer to see dark blue, pressed jeans but he can wear this look well.

Fortunately, Newt Gingrich has not been campaigning in casual attire.  With his girth, it would not be a pretty site!  He has wisely chosen dark suits with tie, which draws attention to his face and what he is saying rather than his waistline.

Even President Obama, who is always impeccably dressed, is often seen wearing a dress shirt without a tie when traveling across the country.

When a final candidate is chosen and the presidential race begins in earnest, image consultants will be hired and candidates will be packaged to project the proper image.  Although my choice will be guided by what the candidate stand for and how they will run the country, I will be among the first to comment on what they are wearing!



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