If you've been keeping up on the midterm elections, you might've noticed that several of the political candidates this year have tried to use humor, in some form or another, in their political ads. From Terry Lynn's “Really” ad to Mitch McConnell's “What Rhymes with Alison Lundergan Grimes?” it seems that serious politicians everywhere have been trying to wisecrack their way into the poll booth. So why have serious politicians professing to have serious stands on serious issues taken such a frivolous approach to campaigning?
The answer is simple, really: the ads are an attempt to humanize the candidate and relate to the constituency. By showing their audience that they're human — that they laugh too, that they like to have fun and poke fun — they're shaking off the image of the power-hungry bureaucrat who's only interest is self-gain and power, and they're building affinity towards an otherwise dry topic.