09 January 2008

Runner-ups Making Some Changes

Coming off second-place finishes last night in New Hampshire's presidential primary, Democrat Barack Obama and Republican Mitt Romney have some changes in store.

Obama's are rhetorical. Romney's are strategic, and a bit more drastic.

AP reports Romney is pulling TV ads from South Carolina and Florida and will run more ads in Michigan.

This means at least two things: even Romney's pockets are not bottomless, and the former Massachusetts governer needs a win - badly and right away.

Michigan is next up and it is a becoming a must-win for Romney.

Romney grew up in the state and his father was a popular governor there in the '60s. Still, he and Mike Huckabee are polling about even there, and last night's winner John McCain is nipping at their heals.

Romney is well behind in South Carolina and Florida, which come later this month. So, given his need for a big win, the strategy would seem to make sense.

It would also seem to indicate just how much trouble Romney is in.

Meanwhile, Obama is hinting there may be a sharper edge to him in the very near future, telling the AP today:

"I think that Senator Clinton, obviously, is a formidable and tough candidate, and we have to make sure that we take it to them just like they take it to us. I come from Chicago politics. We're accustomed to rough and tumble."

Getting a bit tougher as Clinton pushes from her end is probably unavoidable. But I think it would be a mistake for Obama and his team to make too many changes based on a three-point loss in New Hampshire.

Without all the pre-election hype of an Obama tidal wave, the three-point loss would not have been such a big a deal. Obama's camp shouldn't try to fix what aint broke.

And they're going to have to stop saying stupid things like this - perhaps some of the most asinine words uttered in this campaign to date.

One other note of interest. Despite his loss last night, Obama did pick up the endorsement of Nevada's largest labor union today - the Culinary Workers Union, which represents hotel, restaurant and laundry workers in Nevada's casinos.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dr. E here.

Clearly this is enjoyable.

Would benefit from some history. Way to Win book provides some provocative notions (interestingly echoed by Jonathan Alter on Newsweek.com) about the transition from Clintonistas to Obama as compared with the transition from FDR to Kennedy. Bill Clinton was the same age in '92 as Obama is today. The time between FDR and JFK (what happened to initials?) was about the same as the interval since JFK to Clinton.