page three November 11,1992
What did Ross Perot accomplish in Election '92?
Major: Political Studies /
Over the years there have been many third party candidates running in
the Presidential elections. This year was no different Fifteen candidates
actually ran for the Oval Office, but the public only heard about the usual
Republican and Democratic candidates plus a Texas billionaire, Ross Perot.
Since the media is a profit-driven industry, it operates on business
principles and promotes whoever can help them the most This year the media
showed America a frightening as
pect: that democracy can be bought
through media exposure.
George Bush and Bill Clinton
went on road trips around the coimty
to promote their campaigns. Ross
Perot ran thirty-minute info
mercials on national T.V. The
people never really met him. He
never visited North Carolina or the
other undecided states. He never
got out and met the voters, yet he
claimed a mandate from the people.
If any other candidate had pulled out in the middle of the race and then
re-entered, the press would normally either ignore or crucify him. When Ross
Perot got back into the race after dropping out, the iK^ess not only welcomed
him back with open arms, but continued to give him air time for his story of
a Republican conspiracy.
If you watched any political commercials this year, you might have
noticed that all of Perot’s commercials were on at prime-time air slots. He was
competing with Coke and AT&T for air time. Bush and Clinton ran their ads
during the day, especially near news times. The viewer audiences for the two
time slots are not comparable.
This year Ross Perot did not win any electoral votes, but he did open up
the possibility of a media-based national campaign that ignores the people
individually. The citizens of the United States should be wary of anyone
telling them through T.V. appearances that he can solve their problems. We
must make sure the candidates stay in touch with the real people of the country
- the people who elect them.
For the first time in 80 years a third party had a strong showing in the
presidential race. Ross Perot captured almost 20% of the popular vote in the
election last week.
Many of my friends said they voted for Perot because they did not like
George Bush or Bill Clinton. For the first time, many people felt that there was
a viable choice aside from the regular Democratic and Republican candidates.
Instead of not voting, many people
voted for Perot to show that they
disliked the other candidates. Perot
supporters are rallying for him to
runinl996. The media are asking
him if he would lead a third party.
He says he will do what the volun
teers want him to do. One sup
porter said the new party could be
called United We Stand, America,
and the symbol would be the
Perot was not what many
call a normal politician. He spent his own money (about $60 million) on his
campaign and said that he wanted to be the voice of the American people. He
said that he had no personal goal to become involved in politics. He said that
if he won the presidency, he did not want to be paid. He also stayed away from
negative campaigning, providing infomercials instead. In the debates he forced
the candidates to talk about the issues, not each other. One issue that he turought
out was the deficit When asked about what kind of experience he had, he
commented that he did not have the experience of running up a $4 trillion debt.
Although I did not support Perot I think his entering the race benefited
overall. Voter turn-out was stronger this year and I attribute that to Ross Perot
Some people say that he was not good for the race because he took votes away
from the candidates that were more likely to win the election. I disagree. I think
he brought in more votes. People who are dissatisfied with the status quo saw
Perot as an alternative. On 20/20 Friday, Barbara Walters in an interview with
Perot said people voted for Perot out of “anger at the dysfunction of Washing
ton.” Perot offered a fresh outlook on the presidency.
Order a Cornhuskin’ video!
Return this form and a check to the MCTV Cable Office, Rm. 71, Campbell Library by Nov. 13.
I would like to order the following copies of Cornhuskin* ** 1992!:
#1 [ ] freshman/junior version (2 hrs.) $15 each _
#2 [ ] sophomore/senior version (2 hrs.) $15 each.
#3 [ ] both versions for $25 (4 hrs.) _
* Make checks to Meredith CollegeA^ideo Club.
** Please allow two weeks. You will be called when your order has arrived and can be picked up at the
MCTV Cable Office.
Dr. Sandra Thomas,
Vice President for
will speak on "Women’s
Success: Building a
Formula for Managing
6:30 - 7:15 p.m.