In recognition that both parties are spending --with the help of PACs--an estimated $10 billion from now until election day, primarily on TV ads to sway voters, here's the speech that could guarantee a victory for President Obama.
"My fellow Americans. Many of you dread the mostly negative ads that will bombard you during the next two months, feeling they do nothing to enlighten you about the real choice between Mr. Romney and myself. Perhaps you consider the money that is spent on such advertising wasteful, and even tragic in these times of economic hardship.
I have long criticized the system of PACs for damaging our voting process by skewing it towards messages benefitting the interests of "the one-percent." You may know that Mr. Romney has more support among wealthy PAC donors that I do. You may be aware that I am criticized in my own party for not doing enough to court the big money, even being uncomfortable doing so. I stand guilty as charged.
What I can do to show my agreement with you, and to be true to who I am and what I believe, is to instruct my party and the PACs that plan to place ads on behalf of my victory to instead donate that money to the communities in which such ads would run. These expenditures would be in the key states most heavily. I ask that my party and PACs donate the money intended for my re-election to better these communities instead of in ads urging votes for me. The money could be used for infrastructure re-building, to make better and safer communities and provide jobs in the process; it might be used to stock food pantries which run low in September with the added expenses of getting children school supplies; it may be to buy classroom equipment or do repairs to make schools more suitable for learning. It could benefit health clinics, job training, frail and elderly home bound people....the needs are great and the possibilities are many.
I urge my private and party supporters to ask mayors and community leaders--Democratic or Republican--in cities they had targeted for ads, how that money could best help their area's greatest needs. I ask the media in these places to report how the money is being spent, because THIS is what I stand for, and what I believe in.
I want to clarify that the estimated $10 billion figure for advertising is not limited to the presidential race: it would extend across an estimated 10,000 candidates running this season for various offices. Of the total, it is estimated that the presidential race would spend about 45% of that, less than $5 billion. PACs have given a greater share of that portion to the Romney campaign than to mine. Still, it's a huge amount: we're talking billions here.
Let communities across this country donate my share to improve America instead of asking people to vote for me. Whether you feel any expenditure benefits you directly or not, I hope that you agree that the best use of this money is to benefit dire needs and stimulate the economy--in some towns, if not your own.
At the very least, this will cut in half the annoying phone calls, unsightly billboards, and TV ads assaulting you during this election season, and that, my friends, will truly beautify America."
The audiobook version of Carol DeChant's "Great American Catholic Eulogies" was named Best Audiobook of the Year by the Independent Book Publishers Association.