I'm (obviously) supporting Obama in this cycle, from the beginning of the primaries til now; but thought I'd post this just for fun; I actually composed (and then deleted) a version of this diary a couple years ago. For what it's worth, my post-Obama candidate for 8 years from now...
[Beginning of make believe]
My dream candidate is a state governor who grew up working class and made himself prosperous by his own efforts. He knows his way around a union hall; while he's been both a union member and management, one of the things that made him want to start a business is he didn't have the stomach for the kind of screwing over of workers that is part and parcel of being a middle manager in many large companies.
There's a story circulated about him that he once missed an important vote in the state assembly because it was opening day of deer season, and he was nowhere to be found.
He is passionate about doing what he can to make sure that workers get a fair deal in America. Reliable rumor has it he once threw a Democratic Party official out of his office, with instructions never to return, because that Democrat had dared to make a crack about "the damned union chiselers."
He's known for intervening personally to try to save jobs (especially union jobs) when some mill owner makes noise about "off-shoring" production. He once loudly and publicly questioned a plant-owners patriotism for sending jobs overseas. He drives a pickup truck; not because he's making some kind of "positioning" statement, but because he actually needs one for driving around his working farm. He overturned his state's "right-to-work" laws, and passed card-check legislation, as one of his first acts as governor.
He got elected governor by putting together a coalition of blue-collar workers (who, in reciprocation for his manifest passion for their welfare, would gladly walk through the fires of hell for him); hunters and environmentalists (the hunters love telling the story of that missed vote, the environmentalists respect him for the genuine passion with which he talks about conservation) and family farmers (who trust him implicitly to look out for their interests.)
He insisted that his son and daughter attend a state college, even though their grades could easily have gotten them into a top-tier private college. Anything that smacks of elitism is something he has little patience for.
There are a few things that really piss him off...
Anyone, especially a self-described "progressive," who has the temerity to say a word against unions and people whose collars are likely to be blue is going to be the object of a withering dressing down, and be called a "damned Judas."
Hypocrites: A pastor who has a mega-church in his state once got a meeting with the governor. No one is quite sure what transpired in that meeting, but his secretary remembers hearing the governor bellow, "No God-Damned Pharisee swindler in a thousand-dollar suit is going to tell ME what to do!!" followed by the Pastor retreating from the governor's office with an ashen face.
Polluters: He'd rather personally swim in nuclear waste than have some company dump a teaspoon of pollution on his state. He appointed a pitbull to go after polluters in his state.
He's more of an egalitarian than a libertarian; he knows instinctively that one of the primary functions of Government is to help balance society by keeping things (relatively, anyway) equal, thus providing stability.
[End of Make Believe]
A guy like this would make deep, deep inroads into the Republican working-class base. He would also be familiar to (and typical of) generations of Democrats from the late 1920s to 1970s.
Sherrod Brown was once asked why so many blue collar people in southeastern Ohio voted for Republicans. His perfect response: "Because Democrats stopped talking to them."