Who Will Win In A General Election?

In the height of the campaigning for the 12th General Election, opposition politicians are trying desperately to win votes by speaking at 3 or 4 ceramahs in a day, traveling hundreds of kilometers, shaking thousands of hands and driving themselves to the ground in the process. But in reality, how many voters can they reach out in an average of 3 ceramahs a day given the limited period of campaigning? Reaching out to the voters is one thing but to convert a voter is another thing.

By scrutinising the Hillary Clinton versus Barak Obama campaign, why did Barak Obama gained so much momentum the past two months. The Oprah Winfrey endorsement of Obama in May 2007 catapulted him as a frontrunner for the Presidential candidate. But it was his ability to raise more campaign funds than Clinton that ultimately helped him to win the votes. Obama raised US$ 32 million in January 2008 versus Clinton’s US$ 13.5 million. With the superior resources of more than double the amount of campaign funds, Obama was able to reach out to the voters more effectively. It was reported that Obama had 80% more ads in the state of Ohio and 50% more ads in the state of Texas. The increased popularity of Obama in recent weeks was a clear indication that who ever has more media coverage, will have the upper hand.

Coming back to Malaysia, the Barisan Nasional can nominate anyone they want, regardless whether the candidates have the calibre or not. With the total control which they have over the local media and the amount of advertisements they have put in, the 2/3 victory for the government is a signed deal.

It is a sad but when money politics prevail, real democracy dies.

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7 Responses to Who Will Win In A General Election?

  1. Yit Peng says:

    Arghhhhh!!!!!! to Malaysian politics!!!!!

  2. shorthorse says:

    Yes, politics is big business alright….!!!!!!!! Wow…didn’t realize Obama raised more than double of Clintong…very interesting…& yet – at the end of the day…its McCain that’s likely to win the Presidential elections!

  3. ShadowZero says:

    I absolutely agree with what you said in the last paragraph. Some BN candidates completely lack the experience needed to lead and represent the locals. As you said, money politics rule the scene, and the citizens are the ones who are biting the dust here.

  4. Gina says:

    Is there even democracy in this country? I don’t think there is such thing. I remember once a lecturer told us – democracy is like a diamond. You throw it into a sea of glass – and it would be almost impossible to find it back. We have a sea of glass back here… they glitter – but they are worthless.

  5. asme says:

    To be fair, Malaysia is still better than Pakistan or Yemen as far as democracy is concerned. The people are as much to blame as the system. Most of us are too deeply entrenched in our own comfort zone to risk really fighting for democrazy.

  6. Richard F says:

    To blame Sen. Obama for trying to bring himself much media coverage is wrong. This is someone who just got in the spotlight a couple of years back. He only started having real nation-wide coverage less than two years back. But Sen. Clinton has been in the spotlight since 1991; since President Bill Clinton started his bit for the Presidency……. then Sen. Clinton was first lady for two terms (8 years), since leaving the white house, she has not only been a Senator, but a New York Senator; which also comes with a lot of media coverage…….. so give me a break. Can someone do the math and tell us how many hours, if not days, weeks or months of air time this is. If you compare this with Barack’s air time, he would be so far behind that it would just look like a joke…… Barack’s air time is a drop when compared to Hillary’s ocean of air time (Almost 17 years)…… So how else do you expect Barack to make himself know and let people know what he is about……. to back this up, he has mostly made progress, when people get to know him better and what he is about….. so this much sorted media presence is a good idea…… Let me take time here to also mention that Senator McCain has been in the Senate for decades; media coverage, media coverage, media coverage is all I have to say, you do the math…. DECADES…… So give Sen. Obama, a chance to also catch up and make himself known.

  7. asme says:

    I don’t blame him for trying to get more airtime. In fact, Obama did a great job raising the necessary funds. He has managed to capture the hearts of the ordinary folks, something which Mrs. Clinton failed.

    Whether it is Obama or Clinton (looks unlikely), my heart goes out for a Democrat. As long as the Republicans don’t win this time round.

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