Nancy Pelosi

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at dennyhatch.com.

If the 2008 election was about hope and change, the 2010 mid-term campaign, judging by its direct mail, was mostly focused on anger. That's the most obvious takeaway based on a review of the fundraising appeals and campaign fliers that we've seen during the year. Whether directed at President Obama, or at Congressional leaders Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, this emotional touchpoint dominated political mail like it hasn't since the days of Bill Clinton.

With the dust beginning to settle after Election 2010, now is a good time to take a look at the role direct mail played in how the parties and candidates raised money and turned voters out to the polls ... or not. As with every election, there were new movements and people wrestling for power, but the mail they sent was, with very few exceptions, pretty traditional.

Let me say at the outset that I have no idea who I will vote for in the general election. Being a committed Independent, I will not be voting in the Pennsylvania primary on April 22. As of March 27, the candidacies of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are dead even in the opinion polls. The candidates are beginning to hammer each other, freeing John McCain, the presumptive Republican nominee, to act, look and sound presidential on the national and international stage. If strong action is not taken to break the logjam, this internecine scrap will go down to the convention in August

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