Romney's Slash And Burn Primary Tactics Could Be An Issue In General

McCain 2008 employed this strategy and it certainly became an issue in the general election, since the campaign essentaily had to start over in many key battleground states. BuzzFeed's Zeke Miller reports:

Governor Mitt Romney’s [presidential] campaign in any given primary state ha[s] fallen into a pattern: A barrage of negative campaign ads dominate the airwaves. New Hampshire Gov. John Sununu holds a punchy conference call to influence local press coverage. A final group of endorsements and volunteers fill out the state’s leadership team.

And, as the primary closes, Romney’s small SWAT team rolls in: For more than two months, the same half-dozen mid-level staffers have arrived, bedraggled, from the last major contest to take over the state’s field and press operations.

But the decision to run what are effectively pop-up campaigns in the primary states has the downside... they leave little behind. Romney never built the sort of large volunteer operation Obama's 2008 primary race assembled in important swing states like Florida and Ohio, and as the general election approaches, he's likely to be starting from scratch. Some local Obama offices, by contrast, have remained open continuously for over four years. And Obama's well-funded effort is already building for November. When Romney's staff moved out of its office in Iowa after a virtual tie in the caucuses in January, the Obama campaign opened an office in Romney's vacant headquarters.

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published this page in In The News 2012-04-06 12:00:00 -0400
Analysis & Political Strategy