Romney has spent upwards of US$10 million in Iowa and all he got was this lousy t-shirt—Romney suddenly aware of his painfully exposed position in the early-state primaries—yet more evidence of Romney’s appallingly low ROI for his every campaign dollar

“‘I’m going to be facing stiff competition from one or more of the candidates,’” Romney said as the sport utility vehicle carrying him sped through this western Iowa town. ‘This is one where easily it could tighten up, I could find myself a few points behind,’” or so intoned his imperious and distant majesty, Willard Milton Romney himself, about his chances in Iowa, as reported by our new favorite reporter, the estimable Liz Sidoti, and reproduced on, in a post titled Huck to go on air, by the estimable Rhett Hatcher, who is rapidly becoming one of our favorite contributers.

“So Exactly How Much is Mitt Spending to Buy His Leads?”—asks William Reston in a post titled So exactly how much is Mitt spending to buy his leads?

Mr. Reston’s answer: That would be $85,000 a day. $600,000 on ads LAST WEEK ALONE.

And remember, the vast majority of time that Romney has been dumping tens of millions of dollars into advertising has been uncontested. All of this to buy leads in 2 states where approx 60% and 70% of voters have yet to make a final decision.

Reston’s conclusion: This race hasn’t even begun yet folks …

Here is our question: Why has Romney not consolidated his leads?—Why has Romney, again, failed to launch? Why has Romney not moved to close the deal with voters—the voters who support him!?

The race has suddenly begun with Romney still not having accomplished either of the 2 tasks of Romney’s von Schlieffen plan:

(a) consolidate the conservative base, Evangelical voters


(b) secure insurmountable leads the early-primary states

How—we would like to ask—can you spend that much and receive so little in return? How can you spend that much time and effort on the ground and still start from behind everyone else? See:

Levenson: “Romney’s strategy has produced broad-based, but not deeply loyal, support—Romney’s supporters are the least likely to have made up their minds, compared with backers of Giuliani and Senator John McCain of Arizona”

We predicted all of this almost point-for-point:

And the basis for our predictions?—ROI. As we wrote elsewhere: ROI, friends. It’s all about the ROI. Strategy? Who cares about strategy?—strategy is meaningless—it reduces to brute logistics in most cases.

Moral: There is no strategy that can compensate for the lack of a message developed and delivered by a credible messenger.

And: The only reliable index of a successful message delivered by a credible messenger is your campaign dollar ROI. If anyone should know this, it should be Romney! Productivity, Romney!—Efficiency!—the ratio of your input to your output!—you need to raise the productivity of your operation, and fast.

yours &c.
dr. g.d.


  1. elbeau

    Oh…come on dotan,

    He’s campaigning against the He-Man of 9/11 and the commander of the SuperCarrier that helped find the Red October…who later stepped in to save the New York legal system from the worst primetime villians imaginable. Their name recognition came FREE and free-flowing.

    I would have a huge problem with his spending if it wasn’t largely his own money…in other words, if he was buying a nomination using special interest funds alone, we’d be in real trouble.

    But when your opponents are already social superstars and your almost completely unkown to the average American…you’d better fork over the dough.

    Of course, then there’s Huckabee who doesn’t have a small fortune of his own and is still competitive in Iowa at least…now that’s respectable…but I’m still leaning Romney.

  2. dotan

    I had forgotten that Sen. Thompson was in The Hunt for Red October. Anyway: your points are good ones. Thank you for your comments.—g.

  1. 1 how Romney’s spending has distorted perceptions in Iowa and New Hampshire « who is willard milton romney?

    […] Romney has spent upwards of US$10 million in Iowa and all he got was this lousy t-shirt—Romney sud… […]

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