Readers relate to the notion of the underdog and sense the nobility of acknowledging the small-town voter ű it is clearly an emotional appeal.
In appealing to the readerĂs reason ű the logos ű Dickerson and Gibbs utilize statistics to compare BushĂs presidency to those of his predecessors. One particularly effective way they do that is by citing statistics that defy logic ű that argue why Bush should not have been re-elected: Bush had only a 53 percent approval rating in December ű the lowest December rating for a re-elected President in GallupĂs history (32); a below 50 percent approval rating late in the campaign; and 60 percent of Americans thinking the country was on the wrong track (46). By citing these statistics, the reader must agree that anyone who, statistically, should not have won the election, but did anyway, is worthy of being named Person of the Year.
One other way the authorĂs appeal to reason is by giving examples of how ˘ordinary÷ politicians conduct a campaign then go to great lengths to describe how Bush did exactly the opposite ű leaving the reader to reach just one conclusion: if Bush is not ordinary, then he must be ˘extraordinary.÷
The authors prove their credibility by inserting a sidebar ˘snippet÷ of the transcript of their interview with the President (˘The Interview÷ 44). The sidebar is really not necessary, other than it serves its (somewhat obvious) purpose: it (and the picture of the authors standing with the President in the Oval Office) communicates to the reader that they received (at least some) quotes firsthand and allows the reader to assume that perhaps all the information is from a primary source, although this may not, in fact, be the case.
Dickerson and Gibbs made a convincing case for Bush as Person of the Year. The article does well t