Almost every person has been at least once exposed to a political speech by one leader or another in their lifetime. These speeches are way more than just an opportunity to display the charisma of a politician. As pointed by Roger Wolfson political speeches are a core element that connects a leader with the audience and enables them to draw tangible commitment from supporters. Wolfson is an American speechwriter and a TV writer. He has been in the staff of four Senators of the United States, wrote speeches for presidential candidates, founded his own strategic consulting firm, worked as a civil rights attorney, and was Vice President of Channel One News.
Political speeches are required to be truly heartfelt, so that it can effectively encourage and motivate the audience. Speeches delivered by politicians have a crucial role to play on how the public perceives them. In many cases, good speeches help in increasing the level of trust an audience have on the leader. Roger Wolfson considers every opportunity to address a public audience to be a sacred trust. He believes that he is honored to help politicians and individuals connect to their highest sources of inspiration. Over the years, he has written a number of stump speeches, policy announcements, and national party convention speeches. In addition to writing, he has also delivered several political and policy speeches. He had served as a surrogate speaker for the Kerry/Edwards presidential campaign, as well as multiple other campaigns.
Being an experienced professional, Roger Wolfson underlines some core aspects of a political speech in the points mentioned below:
- Connection: The ability to efficiently connect with a large set of audience is one of the most vital factors of a successful political speech. A powerful person aiming to seek more power won’t find it easy to instill confidence in the public and make them relate to him/her at once. Hence, their speeches must be formulated in a matter that the audience finds themselves relating to its words.
- Context: It helps to be aware of elements of ‘where, when and with whom’, when delivering a political speech. This factor includes knowing and addressing the socio-cultural norms of the place where the speech is being given, and providing a slight nod to the local figures. The aspect of symbolism also plays a major role here, and helps in building a stronger connection with the audience.
- Construct: Roger Wolfson says that political speeches that are delivered with a goal of soliciting votes must ideally be built on a contrasting note. It should talk about the present situation, while highlighting a better view of the future where the current problems shall be eradicated. However, the politicians must not get carried away in describing the status quo, and try to get to the key point as fast as possible.
A good political speech would be simple, crisp, and have catchphrases that stay in the minds of the audience for a long time.