Charles Hayes: Elections are won and lost through appeals to identity. It’s that simple and that complicated. This is why symbols and 30-second, hot-button commercials sway public opinion.
Michael Sigman: Roughly a third of Al’s votes came from soul and pop music lovers who believed they were voting for sexy Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Al Green, nee Albert Greene. Green, who was a superstar who sold millions of records in the ’70s, also evoked sympathy from voters who remembered he was once doused by his girlfriend in a sea of boiling grits.