fbpx

Can an Ugly Man or Woman be Elected President?

[additional-authors]
November 26, 2015

As Californians contemplate a probable future with Gavin Newsom as governor, this obverse question must be asked.

I read a recent comments section in a national conservative publication discussion of Ted Cruz, and was struck by how many of the comments were devoted to “the ugliness factor.” Can an ugly man be elected president? Yes, he can. I cite Abe Lincoln, though we used to call a man who looked like Lincoln “homely.” The put-down ugly was more often applied to women, though not in polite conversation.

In my view, an ugly person who exudes humanity, kindness, and wisdom can actually become beloved when people get to know him or her. Golda Meir anyone?

Not so somebody who’s unlikable. Case in point Richard Nixon. He lost to JFK in 1960 probably in significant part because of his reputation as “Tricky Dick.” He barely beat Hubert Humphrey in 1968, despite the fact of the burden the Democrats had of a divided party, an unpopular war, and race riots.

I respect Cruz’s intelligence and political combativeness. He is, well let us say, homely, but a bigger problem in my view is that he’s unlikable. Rubio, on the other hand, is both good looking and likable. And Trump and his pompadour are in a category by themselves, not to be judged by the usual rules.

Did you enjoy this article?
You'll love our roundtable.

Editor's Picks

Latest Articles

The NGO ‘Halo Effect’ Snares Senator Warren

For many years, the powerful realm of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) has been infiltrated by bad actors who exploit the image of altruism to get big donations and promote agendas of hate.

Don’t Call It a Misprint

A New Jersey high school is trying to unpack how a page in its 2024 yearbook highlighting a Jewish student group got hijacked by Muslim classmates on its way to the printer

More news and opinions than at a
Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.

More news and opinions than at a Shabbat dinner, right in your inbox.