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  • America Votes

    Election news from across the Knight Ridder network and the Web

    Monday, February 09, 2004

    Now back to the real issues 

    John Kerry's ascendancy among Democrats raises the question: Is America ready for a cosmetically enhanced president?

    Rumors surfaced recently that Kerry, 60, received injections of the paralyzing toxin to zap the furrows from his brow. Kerry denies it.

    Brown University political science professor Darrell West thinks Botox could be a huge liability.

    "The problem with any type of cosmetic improvements is that it's easy to label that as fake and nothing is more devastating for a politician than to be seen as fake in some way," said West, director of the John Hazen White Sr. Public Opinion Laboratory.

    It might not upset people on the East or West coasts, West said, but "in more traditional reaches of the country, in the South and Midwest in particular, people would have difficulty accepting a Botox president."

    And then there's the problem if it turns out Kerry lied.

    "There's possible damage from the act itself and another level of risk associated with the denial. He could lose on either front."

    posted by Ellen Dunkel at 10:11 AM



    This blog is compiled and edited by:

  • Ellen Dunkel, producer for Knight Ridder Digital's National Desk.
  • John Murrell, minister of information for SiliconValley.com.

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