Friday, October 26, 2007

When Politics and Fashion Collide...

The New York Times ran this fun article about the t-shirts, hats, messenger bags, and various sundries that are being offered for sale at the official online stores of most of the 2008 presidential candidates. The spin is that you can tell a lot about the demographic groups that the candidates are targeting from the merchandise in their official stores. Obama, it seems, is targeting 25-30 year old women with his "ribbed baby doll t-shirts." Giuliani's tactics appear to be more direct. He targets students, veterans, women, and sportsmen with "Students for Rudy," "Veterans for Rudy," "Women for Rudy," and "Sportsmen for Rudy" gear.

These are interesting observations. I also wonder to what extent the merchandise in candidates' official stores is an attempt to counter the proliferation of unofficial campaign merchandise bearing messages that the candidates do not control. Well over a year ago, before either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama announced their presidential campaigns, I passed a woman on the street whose "Clinton/Obama '08" tote bag suggested that she had already decided that they were running. As a ticket.

No comments: