In her ad, Lopez (J-Lo) encourages Hispanic viewers to join Latinos for Obama, saying the President is “taking steps to support the Latino community every day.” Hamm, in a less overt but still Obama-favoring ad, encourages voters to head the polls early as he is seen addressing the camera in front of Barack Obama posters.
The actress/singer/dancer and former American Idol judge cites Obama’s commitment to Pell Grants as one example of Obama having the backs of Latinos in her ad. But what Lopez fails to tell viewers — or perhaps what she does not even know — is that a bill Obama signed actually cut Pell Grant funding by $11 billion for the next decade. Additionally, Pell Grants are widely viewed as harmful to students, since they, like other federal higher education subsidies, actually increase tuition rates.
Lopez also says Obama is “fighting to keep Latino families out of poverty,” but fails to give any specifics on this plan.
Hamm’s video is less controversial, as he simply explains the process of voting early in Colorado, a swing state. But as he does so, he stands in front of a wall covered with Obama posters. And in the handy illustrations of Hamm’s explanation, all the ballots are marked for Obama. He must believe that the subliminal messaging will actually work to reelect the incumbent.
And with a week until the election and Obama still struggling to recapture the youth vote like he did in 2008, it is no wonder he is so heavily relying on his Hollywood friends. Earlier this month, the Obama campaign sent out an email from poet Maya Angelou. In September, Katy Perry went to bat for Obama and Hollywood royalty Beyoncé Knowles and husband Jay-Z held a lavish fundraiser for the President. Beyoncé also sent out a campaign email just days before the fundraiser, encouraging Obama supporters to donate for a chance to win a meet-n-greet with the President, First Lady Michelle Obama, Jay-Z and Beyoncé herself.
But will all this celebrity pandering really help Obama in the end? Not likely. Voters want to hear about the issues, not celebrities.