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Posts Tagged ‘South Carolina’

FLORIDA |  Förlusten i South Carolina fick Mitt Romneys kampanjrådgivare att tänka till. Nu har man lagt om strategin för att kunna vinna Florida.

Resultatet blev en mer offensiv Romney. Han lyckades t.o.m. vrida valdebatterna ur händerna på huvudmotståndaren Newt Gingrich.

Jim Rutenberg och Jeff Zeleny The New York Times:

[T]he Romney team outlined the new approach to the candidate. Put aside the more acute focus on President Obama and narrow in on Mr. Gingrich.

Find lines of attack that could goad Mr. Gingrich into angry responses and rally mainstream Republicans. Swarm Gingrich campaign events to rattle him. Have Mr. Romney drop his above-the-fray persona and carry the fight directly to his opponent, especially in two critical debates scheduled for the week.

[…]

If Mr. Romney does win here on Tuesday, it will have been through a blistering and unrelenting series of attacks. His campaign has pressed everything at its disposal into service to eviscerate Mr. Gingrich, painting him as an erratic, unreliable Washington insider in mailings and television advertisements, at two critical debates here (where his team made sure Mr. Romney had ample and vocal supporters in the audiences) and even by sending supporters to mock him at his own events.

On Saturday, it released a new ad featuring a 1997 NBC News segment in which the anchor Tom Brokaw reported that Congressional peers of Mr. Gingrich, then speaker of the House, had “found him guilty of ethics violations.”

David Kochel, an adviser who arrived here from Iowa to oversee the pressure campaign, described the strategy as “let’s go rush the quarterback.” A team of Romney boosters started infiltrating nearly every Gingrich campaign stop to offer instant rebuttals. Representative Jason Chaffetz of Utah showed up to challenge Mr. Gingrich’s record to reporters and at one point tangled with Mr. Gingrich’s press secretary as the cameras rolled. Bay Buchanan, a longtime conservative activist, worked on the Romney campaign’s behalf to win over voters and commentators.

Rich Galen, The Daily Beast, skriver:

In the debate Thursday night, Gingrich complained that “it’s increasingly interesting to watch the Romney attack machine coordinate things,” after a full day of an array of attacks on Gingrich along an astonishingly broad frontfrom Elliott Abrams, to R. Emmett Tyrrell, to Bob Dole—all made easy to find because they were accumulated and posted by Matt Drudge.

It was political shock and awe.

Were the attacks unfair? That depends upon who one is backing in the race.  Were they, as Gingrich suggested, coordinated? Clearly. Was it the kind of day that only a campaign with a fully developed plan and the capacity to execute it could have pulled off? Absolutely. Could Gingrich have done it even if he had thought of it? Not on your life.

Gingrich’s complaint was actually a compliment. The Romney campaign appears to be a well-trained army, which has plenty of ammunition and the discipline to use those bullets when they will have the most effect. Like on the day of a hugely important debate.

[…]

Gingrich is a student of military history, tactics, and strategy. He knows, or should know, that the same person cannot design the strategy for a war, do the logistics, sell to civilians why this is crucial to their future, train the troops, and lead the charge up the hill.

It takes a trained army to run a war. It takes a trained staff to run a major campaign.

Se även: Judith Greys “Republican Political Ads in Florida: Why Romney’s Are Best” på The Daily Beast.

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SOUTH CAROLINA | Valsegern i South Carolina gav Newt Gingrich 40,4 %. På andra och tredje plats kom Mitt Romney (27,8 %) och Rick Santorum (17,0 %).

De senaste dagarna har varit tuffa för Mitt Romney. Först får han besked om att han inte vann Iowa med åtta röster utan förlorade med trettiofyra röster till Rick Santorum. Och nu denna valförlust.

Frågan är bara hur överraskande resultatet i South Carolina egentligen var. Delstaten tillhör en av de mer konservativa.

Att man gärna ville se någon annan än Romney är därför inte alltför överraskande. Möjligtvis är det gapet mellan Gingrich och Romney som förvånar mest.

Eller som President Barack Obamas rådgivare David Axelrod pikade Romney på Twitter: ”If you & SuperPac spend $4.7m, and get zero delegates, how much did you spend per delegate?”

Men nästa delstat är Florida där Gingrich kan få det betydligt svårare. Ben Jacobs, The Daily Beast, skriver:

The next state to vote is Florida, where Romney leads in the polls. He’s already spent more than $1 million there and is mounting a concerted effort to target absentee voters, since many in the Sunshine State vote early. At least 185,436 votes have already been cast, and there are nearly 300,000 more absentee ballots still outstanding. These voters will be impervious to the sort of last-minute momentum shifts that helped Gingrich claim victory in South Carolina.

Further, the diverse demographics of Florida appear to favor Romney. Although much of the northern part of the state is as deeply tied to the Bible Belt as any other part of the South, Florida will also be the first state where there will be significant minority participation in the GOP primaries, particularly in the Cuban community in South Florida where Romney has already secured a number of major endorsements, including Representatives Mario Diaz-Balart and Ileana Ros-Lehtinen.

Bild: The State – framsidan är från söndagen den 22 januari 2012. Tidningen publiceras i Columbia, South Carolina.

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USA | Än har Mitt Romney inte vunnit. Söndag natt hoppade Jon Huntsman av och gav Romney sitt stöd. Men i South Carolina knappar Newt Gingrich in.

The Economist ägnar stort utrymme åt Romney i sitt senaste nummer. I den längre artikeln ”Towards the coronation” skriver man:

Almost 60% deem Mr Romney an “acceptable” nominee, according to Gallup, a polling firm, a higher proportion than any of his rivals. Strikingly, he received the blessing of both moderate and conservative Republicans in equal proportion. Most soundings show Mr Romney running better against Mr Obama than any of the other candidates—a fact not lost on primary voters.

Some right-wing pundits worry that Mr Romney will fail to excite the party’s base, and thus depress turnout on election day. But elections are won among swing voters, and he holds far more allure for them than any of his rivals. He is strongly supported, too, by the politicians who will be running below him on the ticket if he wins the nomination. Mr Romney has more backing among Republican congressmen and governors than all the other candidates combined.

Anyway, Mr Romney probably does not need to thrill voters to beat Mr Obama. When an incumbent president is running, says Charlie Cook, a political analyst, the election normally turns into a referendum on his performance, as long as his opponent is “colourless and odourless”. If so, the meticulously anodyne nature of Mr Romney’s campaign may be its greatest strength.

Se även: Ledaren ”America’s next CEO?”. Artikeln ”Mitt Romney marches on” och Schumpeter-krönikan ”Romney the revolutionary”. (Tidskriftsomslag och artiklar från The Economist den 14-20 januari 2012.)

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SOUTH CAROLINA | Mitt Romney var kandidaten alla ville komma åt under tv-debatten. Newt Gingrich vann och fick t.o.m. stående ovationer vid ett tillfälle.

Fox News skriver:

Fresh off a rousing debate performance that had the Republican audience giving a standing ovation — purportedly the first in a debate since Ronald Reagan in New Hampshire in 1980 — Newt Gingrich may be reconsidering how far he can go in the GOP campaign.

[…]

But the latest Fox News poll continued to show Mitt Romney faring best against Obama in a general election. Unless Gingrich or another candidate steps up in South Carolina, Romney is poised to go three-for-three in the first primaries of the season.

Gingrich offered several forceful arguments on Monday night. He defended calling Obama the ”food stamp president,” pointing out that the food stamp rolls are at historic highs.

[…]

Gingrich called for tying all unemployment compensation, which currently lasts 99 weeks, to a job-training requirement. He also won strong support from the audience when he was asked whether it was belittling to minorities to suggest that poor children work as janitors to build a work ethic.

Gingrich replied, ”No, I don’t see that.”

He said dozens of people have reached out to him recalling jobs they got when they were ”11, 12, 13 years of age,” and defended the idea of paying kids to work in school.

”They’d be getting money, which is a good thing if you’re poor. Only the elites despise earning money,” he said, later adding: ”I believe every American of every background has been endowed by their creator with the right to pursue happiness. And if that makes liberals unhappy, I’m going to continue to find ways to help poor people learn how to get a job, learn how to get a better job and learn some day to own the job.”

Se debatten på YouTube. Och en avskrift från debatten finns på Fox News.

Övrigt: Framsidan är tidningen The Greenville News från South Carolina.

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USA | Mitt Romney tog hem New Hampshire med 39,3 %. På andra plats Ron Paul (22,9 %) och på tredje plats Jon Huntsman (16,9 %).

Romney blev därmed historisk. Han är den förste republikanske presidentkandidaten som inte innehar presidentämbetet – ”non-incumbent – som ändå lyckats vinna både Iowa och New Hampshire.

Och nu börjar kriget om South Carolina.

I artikeln ”Ads bombard South Carolina airwaves ahead of primary” har Alana Semuels i Los Angeles Times tagit sig en titt på den positiva och negativa politisk reklam – inte minst kampanj videos – som väljarna möts av.

När det gäller s.k. ”attack ads” skriver Semuels:

Romney’s super PAC, Restore our Future, is repeating an anti-Newt Gingrich ad that also ran in Iowa, which begins, “Ever notice how some people make a lot of mistakes?” and goes on to detail Gingrich’s “mistakes,” such as working with Nancy Pelosi and attacking Mitt Romney. Anti-Gingrich ads helped dampen support for the candidate in Iowa, where he finished in a disappointing fourth place.

Newt Gingrich is running a new ad, “Changed?” released Tuesday, that criticizes Romney’s abortion policies when he became Massachusetts governor. Starting with a still of Romney’s face, it asks what happened after Romney changed his position to oppose abortion rights, then accuses him of appointing a judge in favor of abortion rights, expanding access to abortion pills and signing a healthcare bill with government-funded abortions. “Massachusetts moderate Mitt Romney. He can’t be trusted,” the ad concludes.

An ad paid for by Ron Paul attacks Rick Santorum as a corrupt free spender who opposed a right-to-work act and voted to raise the debt ceiling. In colors of black, white and red, it quotes criticism of Santorum from newspapers such as the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, saying that Santorum has “a record of betrayal.” It accuses him of collaborating with union leaders and being one of the “most corrupt” members of Congress.

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