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February 06, 2007

How Hot Is John Kerry?

Daniel Radosh does some excellent yeoman's work, noticing that yesterday's New York Times story saying that "even in the best of times, Mr. Kerry’s face hung droopy and funereal, one of the most weary in American politics," doesn't quite track with the record:

Here are some descriptions of him from 2001 to 2004.

"He is an attractive man, handsome." — Brit Hume, Fox News

"matinee-idol handsome." —Larry J. Sabato, Center for Politics

"Kennedy-like charisma" —Iowa City Press-Citizen

"Charismatic" —R. Emmett Tyrell Jr., New York Sun

"Do you have the charm and charisma and oratoric ability of John Kerry?" —Chris Matthews (to Joe Biden) MSNBC

"eloquent and highly charismatic" —Oakland Post

"handsome blue blood" —US News & World Report

"an extremely handsome man with a head chiselled from marble" — Nicholas Lemann, The New Yorker

"He's tall, he's attractive, he's charismatic" —Bill McInturff, GOP pollster

"Handsome man. Lot of charisma, that guy." — Joe Kernan, CNBC

"Tall, handsome" —Daily News

The Press: For John Kerry's looks before they were against them.

February 6, 2007 | Permalink

Comments

Well IMHO, the press was wrong. He always looked like Droopy Dog to me.

Posted by: Adrock | Feb 6, 2007 3:12:15 PM

He always looked rather different from most people. He was always rather elongated and... well, different. As with many aesthetic differences, it's a matter of personal taste whether you think his particular features are teh hott.

Posted by: Julian Elson | Feb 6, 2007 3:50:18 PM

I think the press was misled by false intelligence (based on reports of people who have to look at the likes of Brit Hume in the mirror everyday), and only favored Kerry's looks because they trusted him to use them only as a last resort.

Posted by: Sanpete | Feb 6, 2007 3:53:00 PM

He was hot before prostate cancer and surgery (February 03), not so hot afterwards. Not unusual.

Posted by: arthur | Feb 6, 2007 4:02:46 PM

I read "manatee-idol handsome," and thought "Geez, that's not a compliment."

I've always thought he looked kind of Frankensteiney, myself. But in the looks department, Congress is kind of slim pickin's, so you take what you can get.

Posted by: Sara | Feb 6, 2007 5:21:23 PM

I always thought the description of him as handsome didn't suit - especially once he brought Edwards on; everybody knew where good looking was after that. Kerry looks well maintained and patrician; not a bad look, but not one that helped erase the concern that he came from wealth and was out of touch, either.

And yes, though one may not like it, people do make decisions this way. Not me - I wasn't thrilled about his proposals but voted for him anyway - but they were certainly out there. And anyway, I still think Howard Dean is damn hot. Then again, I also think the same thing about Ahmedinejad... so perhaps looks really shouldn't be the deciding criteria here. ;)

Posted by: weboy | Feb 6, 2007 5:35:07 PM

So, Kerry's a Shar Pei? But don't they grow into their skin folds as opposed to gaining them as they age?

In Kerry's case, his facial appearance seems to vary more than usual depending on lighting, fatigue, makeup, and angle of viewing. Face to face, in sunlight, talking to a big crowd, he does come across as distinguished, but not Bill Clinton-like maturely handsome. He does look "French", whatever that means LOL.

But his smile is just awful, the opposite of how Clinton lingers in the mind.

Posted by: JimPortlandOR | Feb 6, 2007 5:46:28 PM

john kerry is no al gore.
al gore = most handsome person in public life...
in my opinion.

Posted by: jacqueline | Feb 6, 2007 6:48:15 PM

manatee-idol handsome

That describes me.

Posted by: Stephen | Feb 6, 2007 7:35:45 PM

I notice that no one described him as "articulate." Nor "clean," for that matter

Posted by: David | Feb 6, 2007 8:45:12 PM

I notice that no one described him as "articulate." Nor "clean," for that matter

Posted by: David | Feb 6, 2007 8:45:35 PM

That's interesting, jacqueline. I always thought of Al Gore as looking like the epitome of the "generic, well-groomed, middle-aged white male," having an appearance that's completely unremarkable (in either good or bad ways) for anything save it's unremarkableness. I suppose, though, that if the studies where composite "average" faces are more attractive than most real faces are to be believed, then maybe generic is good. Or maybe I'm just blind to Al Gore's looks.

Posted by: Julian Elson | Feb 6, 2007 9:54:02 PM

julian...

a little explanation...
i think that al gore seems to be a true gentleman, and a gentle man.
those qualities, plus his depth and strength of character, make him a very handsome man.


Posted by: jacqueline | Feb 6, 2007 11:32:24 PM

i think that al gore seems to be a true gentleman, and a gentle man.

Sounds like that training to be the Alpha male hasn't paid off.

Posted by: Sanpete | Feb 7, 2007 12:09:55 AM

Adrock, I believe Jon Stewart has already established who Droopy Dog is.

Posted by: KCinDC | Feb 7, 2007 9:27:58 AM

I thought he looked pleasantly distinguished. I didn't think that much of Edwards looks. But then I don't think much of JFK's looks either.

Posted by: rtaycher1987 | Feb 7, 2007 3:46:49 PM

Go jacqueline! Go jacqueline!
I so totally agree with you.
Also, to summarize:
Kerry: Not handsome
Edwards: Not Al Gore but still attractive.

Posted by: Loi | Jun 10, 2007 3:37:29 AM

ok, the whole al gore thing...do we mean al gore now..because he is fat and older..i mean..not bad looking for a 60 year old..i mean..go look at some 60 year olds who arent hollywood actors..gore looks alright..but i wouldnt say hot..but if you look at gore from 2000 and before he is a good looking guy..i think the one thing that hurts his looks is his lack of eyebrows.

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Posted by: judy | Sep 26, 2007 10:56:53 PM

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