If there are other people in the ad besides Mitt Romney, are they all white? Having people surrounding a candidate in a political ad sends the message that those people are whom the candidate ostensibly represents. Featuring an all-white cast of supporters alongside a white candidate makes an inherent critical contrast. It says that “we” whites, represented by Mitt Romney, are different than “those” people.
In a two-and-a-half minute ad Romney ran last month he spoke at length about “Americans,” about how “we” are tired. He talked about “all of the thousands of good and decent Americans” who “love America.” Yet of the dozens of images included in the epic ad, every single person is white, making the association clear: “We” “good and decent” Americans who “love America” look like the folks featured in this ad.