Posts Tagged ‘liz sidoti’

“AP’s Glen Johnson and Liz Sidoti have news of the first negative ad to air in the GOP race,” writes Jonathan Martin of the Politico in a post titled Romney to hit Huck on immigration in Iowa

Who: Mitt on Huck
What: Immigration
When: Starting tomorrow
Where: Iowa

Romney spokesman Kevin Madden tells me that the spot “clarifies the distinct differences between Governor Romney and Mike Huckabee on the issue of immigration.”

UPDATE: I’ve gotten my hands on the ad itself, “The Record.”

Note the gentle lead-in. Romney’s camp plainly recognizes the danger of going negative in Iowa, so they go to considerable length to frame the attack with what is both a nod of respect to Huckabee and a sly effort at dulling the differences between the two on cultural issues.

Then comes the knife, aimed squarely at Huck’s support for providing the children of illegal immigrants tuition breaks … etc.


Landscaper: Romney Never Insisted Employees Be Legal—as reported by Fox News. The landscaper who Mitt Romney fired earlier this week for continuing to employ illegal immigrants says the termination boils down to little more than politics.

And again:

“Romney doesn’t deserve “amnesty” for this recurring lapse in judgment,” writes Ruben Navarrette in a story titled Romney Makes It Hard to Trust Him

And for two reasons:

First, there is the hypocrisy. Millions of Americans benefit from the sweat of illegal immigrants – directly or indirectly – but Romney is the one trying to score political points off these people. As if illegal immigrants don’t do enough, they are now fodder to help put Mitt Romney in the Oval Office.

And second, there is the issue of authenticity. Romney may have tripped up in his effort to fool Republican voters into believing that he’s a real conservative – on abortion, gun control, gay rights and now on illegal immigration – and that he takes to heart the concerns of conservative voters.

Romney desperately needs to sell that line, especially in conservative states such as Iowa where Republican voters at town halls demand to know how candidates will stop illegal immigration. And if Iowans are like many other Americans, after they’ve said their peace, they retreat to their homes to watch cable television demagogues and wring their hands over the “invasion” while someone else does the yardwork, or the housework, or the child care, or the cooking … etc., etc.

yours &c.
dr. g.d.


“‘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.

“SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — Republican presidential contender Mitt Romney, seeking to protect his narrowing lead and fend off challenges from rivals in this early-voting state, assailed Mike Huckabee and Rudy Giuliani over supporting tuition breaks and broader sanctuary for illegal immigrants or their children,” writes Liz Sidoti in an AP release titled Romney Assails Foes on Immigration

As a new poll showed his advantage trimmed in Iowa, the former Massachusetts governor on Tuesday singled out the two Republicans giving chase here and likened them to Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton. “There are those people in both parties who are in a sanctuary state of mind, who believe in sanctuary cities, who believe in policies which are sanctuary in nature,” he said.

Just weeks before voting begins, the race in the leadoff caucus state has tightened. Romney led in Iowa by double-digits in polls for months but now is trying to curb Huckabee’s recent rise in surveys and gains among religious conservatives, while working to prevent Giuliani from mounting a more serious challenge.

Underscoring the fragile state of Romney’s lead here, a CBS News/New York Times poll released Tuesday showed Romney with 27 percent backing by likely GOP caucus-goers. Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor, now threatens Romney’s lead with 21 percent of support; Giuliani, the former New York mayor, has 15 percent … etc.

Just as we predicted. Here is what we wrote elsewhere:

… (6) Contra assumption (iii), there are players other than Mayor Giuliani in this race. Gov. Huckabee is increasingly competitive in Iowa and has consolidated the religious right. See:

Sen. McCain will contest New Hampshire, and Mayor Giuliani is active in Michigan and South Carolina. Precisely because Mayor Giuliani continues to lead in the polls nationally and to lead in the delegate rich larger states, he enjoys strategic depth—i.e. he can allow other candidates to disperse Romney’s energies and hold Romney to at best a split or unclear decision in the early state primaries. In other words, contra Lunquist, Mayor Giuliani does not need to win in the early state primaries. He doesn’t even need to fight a holding action in the early state primaries. He only needs to allow others to fight a holding action in the early state primaries—which is what they will do anyway. In this way Giuliani conserves his own strength even as Romney nails himself insensibly to the cross of his own early-state strategy, disperses his energies fighting off several other campaigners, and hemorrhages further millions of his own money.

Further: Romney is perceived as the front-runner in Iowa, New Hampshire etc. He is the one whom the other candidates will position as their foils, will draw distinctions against. For evidence and analysis see:

Another problem for Romney: you risk going down in flames when you go negative while your own negatives are high. No ones negatives are higher than Romney’s; see:

Romney has the most negative image at this point of any of the major candidates for president, claims Newport of USA Today’s GallupGuru; the Romney campaign’s death-by-internal-memo part (ii)

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dr. g.d.

P.S. Back to Sidoti:

… responding to Romney, Giuliani spokeswoman Maria Comella accused him of ignoring his own record as governor while he campaigns for president. “Under Governor Mitt Romney the number of illegal immigrants skyrocketed, while he recommended millions of dollars in state aid to numerous sanctuary cities and to companies employing illegal immigrants, not to mention the illegals working on his own lawn,” she said … etc., etc.

P.P.S. Hey, Romney. Did you ever wonder why experienced marathon runners almost never start out in the lead?—why they tend to cluster for much of the race? Did you ever wonder why experienced commanders will often allow opposing forces to invest an objective before moving on it? Did it ever occur to you that your rivals would adapt themselves to your much-vaunted von Schlieffen plan? We’re just wondering.

“WASHINGTON (AP) – Riddle me this: How do you stop an ultra-wealthy presidential candidate who leads in early voting states, already has dumped $17.5 million of his own money into his bid and could spend boatloads more to rack up wins in a squeezed primary schedule?“—writes Liz Sidoti in a story titled Analysis: How Do Foes Stop Romney Money?

Mitt Romney’s rivals can only hope they figure that out – and fast.

One answer might seem easy: use your own millions to broadcast the nastiest flip-flop ads you can against him in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina – and hope his poll numbers in those early states tumble. He already trails his top rivals in national surveys.

The reality, however, isn’t clear-cut …

Here is our concern: Whether Romney is successful or not we can now expect in the coming years a cohort of super-wealthy people to seek high office. No, we do not imagine a queue of the super-rich waiting in the wings to satisfy their vanity under color of executive privilege. Rather: the corrupt party establishments themselves will begin to recruit from among the super-rich—here is why:

one, because they may be the only competitive candidates in the post-Romney campaign environment,


two, because all the warm and tender love figures like e.g. Romney tend to spread around to the hacks, consultants, pressure and interest groups, professional campaigners etc., as they attempt to purchase at a discount what their records and reputations cannot command.

Romney has shown them all the way—alas.

Our prediction: expect coordination—whether tacit or otherwise—among the other candidates. See:

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dr. g.d.