Posts Tagged ‘Sam Youngman’

“A memo from a senior strategist for former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney says that the media are ready to give the Republican nomination to Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), but if Romney can attract more conservatives, he will win the nomination,” writes Sam Youngman in a analytical fantasia titled Romney memo says media ‘ready to anoint McCain’

“We still have an uphill battle in front of us,” Romney strategist Alex Gage wrote in the memo. “The mainstream media is (sic) ready to anoint John McCain and he will have advantages in many states running for president for the past eight years – but Gov. Romney has a clear path to victory on February 5th and beyond.”

The memo, obtained by The Hill, outlines how McCain has failed to win over conservative voters in the states that have voted so far, and it details how Romney could have won if only a few more percentage points of that bloc had come over.

“The coalitions that John McCain assembled in New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Florida have been strikingly similar – and are strikingly tenuous,” Gage wrote […]

[…] The memo goes on to say that Romney and McCain “are now in a two-man race and a few points’ movement among conservatives is all that’s needed to tip the scales in favor of Gov. Romney.”

Gage writes that in the early three states McCain won, his margin of victory was the result of the support of moderates, independents and voters that disapprove of the Bush administration.

“None of these groups is a majority of the Republican electorate,” Gage wrote, adding that this is the reason “McCain has failed to win more than 36 percent of the vote in any of them” […]

Gage’s conclusions are based on an emerging fixed point in the discussion. Sen. McCain can reach across party lines to build issues coalitions; Romney can win the base. Chris Suellentrop develops the data coming out of Florida’s contest to arrive at a similar conclusion:

[…] In short, Mitt Romney won the Republican Party’s idea of itself ­ and that, too, is a big deal. If you’re white, Protestant, anti-abortion, go to church on Sundays, think well of the President, want lower taxes, hate terrorists, make a good living, want to do something about immigration, and live in Florida, chances are you voted Romney. The question before Florida was whether McCain could win a closed Republican race, and now we know he can. The question now is whether he can win conservatives ­ and in Florida, he did not […]

Here, for Romney, begins what we earlier called the race to the base.

Hence Romney’s sudden volte face on whether to mount a last ditch advertising salvo. On January 30 David Espo of the AP reported that “Republican presidential rival Mitt Romney signaled Wednesday he’s not ready to finance a costly campaign in the states holding primaries and caucuses next week.

By February 1 Dan Morain and Scott Martelle of the LA Times issued the headline: Romney launches Super Tuesday ad barrage; The multimillion-dollar campaign in far-flung states, he hopes, will help him regain the edge he’s losing to McCain. Experts question whether ads will help at this point

[…] Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney launched a multimillion-dollar purchase of television ads Thursday, in a last-ditch effort to remain competitive with GOP presidential front-runner John McCain in the Super Tuesday contests.

Sources familiar with Romney’s plans said the ad buy would exceed $1 million in California alone, enough to give the former Massachusetts governor a presence in much of the state. Romney also was expected to spread some money around to some of the other 20 states holding GOP primaries or caucuses Tuesday, though experts question whether the late advertising would have any impact.

“I don’t think it’s possible to flood the airwaves in 22 states,” Romney said, but he nevertheless authorized “a seven-figure — I won’t give you the exact number — but a seven-figure advertising buy for our campaign.”

After a series of single-state contests in which voters could shake candidates’ hands, the Republican presidential nomination could be decided by millions of voters casting their ballots after having seen the candidates only in advertisements or news reports.

Those political ads depend on candidates’ ability to pay for them, and with the fields in both parties dwindling this week, the surviving candidates looked to pick up the support of former candidates’ fundraisers and bundlers […]

Can Romney pull off this last chance, high-stakes, 11th hour, and super-expensive gambit? Can Romney secure his nomination and destroy the GOP? Keep watching the skies. Or the airwaves.


Haven’t we all been here before?

yours &c.
dr. g.d.


“SALEM, N.H. – In yet another sign that Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) is on a roll, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) targeted him at an event here Monday afternoon just hours before the first votes in the Granite State’s primary were to be cast,” writes Sam Youngman in a article titled New target? Romney says he can beat Obama

Romney and the rest of the Republican field have spent most of their energy throughout the campaign harshly criticizing Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) – and she was still a target Monday.

But Romney embraced Obama’s theme of change, channeled Clinton’s assertion that a record of change is important and finished by saying that he could beat Obama in the general election.

The former governor spoke of Obama’s victory in Iowa, saying “he surprised a lot of people.”

“He beat them all because he talked about change in Washington,” Romney said to about 100 voters at the Elk Lodge here […]

Note how Romney consistently identifies with what he perceives are his rivals or oppressors. Romney’s method of dispute is not to oppose you, but rather to become you. He becomes a faster, better, abler you than you are.

Currently: Are you Sen. Barack Obama? Well, Romney is a better Barack Obama than you are

Correction: Romney doesn’t necessarily identify with his rivals or oppressors.

Some he ignores or ridicules (to his peril), e.g. Gov. Mike Huckabee, who bested the hapless candidate in aggressively contested Iowa. What Romney identifies with is what he perceives as power. In other words, Romney attemtps to appropriate power by becoming it, in whatever form it confronts him, e.g. Barack Obama. Sen. Obama bested his rivals decisively, so now Romney has become Barack Obama, themes, rhetoric, all of it, only Romney is a better Barack Obama.

Here is a laboratory pure sample of the new Barack-Romney entity, as reported by MoJo’s estimable Jonathan Stein:

[…] Barack Obama won Iowa on a message of change, said Romney [at the Timberland corporate headquarters in NH], and he beat three senators with years of experience. If the Republican nominate McCain, Romney repeatedly predicted, Obama will do to him what he did to Biden, Dodd, and Clinton. (Romney has co-opted Obama and Edwards’ rhetoric thoroughly. Today, he promised to “get the lobbyists out of the way.”) […]

Please also recall—just as an aside—that it was the 60s version of the GOP right wing that crushed the moderate Gov. George Romney (may his name be for a blessing) in 1968. Romney owes us one. To defeat us, us being the right wing, he has become us, only what he believes is a better version of us. This is only an hypothesis. Nothing more. Here is our earlier speculation on this sad theme.

yours &c.
dr. g.d.