Not even Bill Clinton could pull this one off. It was 1985, Ronald Reagan was in the White House, and Democrats were fresh off a historically large presidential defeat.
The solution to turning things around for the party? A response to the State of the Union that featured a focus group of "regular" Americans and politicians like then New Mexico Rep. Bill Richardson and then Georgia Sen. Sam Nunn. Clinton, at the time the governor of Arkansas, moderates the whole experience against an orange background. And to the sweet sounds of Genesis! (Phil Collins played the drums and sang!) What about the U.S. map, you ask? It serves as a video screen that transports viewers (all seven) into the can't miss focus group discussion. That probably seemed cool and high tech at the time. Actually, maybe not.
Watch it for yourself. And God bless Youtube for preserving this glimpse of 80s fashion and political strategery.
Some pertinent questions this whole thing raises:
1. Why was combing your hair over your ears a thing?
2. Why was collared shirt, turtleneck and pullover sweater also a thing?
3. Who came up with this idea?