Penn's Still a Player in Clinton Endgame

Will he 'fly a kamikaze mission' to defeat Obama at all costs?
By Jonas Oransky,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 14, 2008 1:03 PM CDT
Mark Penn, then a pollster for former President Bill Clinton, is seen in this Feb. 3, 1998 file photo, in New York.   (AP Photo/The New York Times, Librado Romero, File)
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(Newser) – Despite Hillary Clinton’s replacement of contentious Mark Penn with the more “ethical” Geoff Garin as chief strategist, the ousted adviser is still very much involved with the campaign, Robert Novak writes in the Chicago Sun-Times—or so he tells his friends. Those who interpreted the switch as a move away from a death-match strategy that would damage the Democratic party to a "Garin-style soft landing to conclude the campaign" could be mistaken.

With Penn lurking, the endgame is still up for grabs, Novak writes. "Garin looks to a post-Hillary political life and does not want to be seen conducting a berserk attack with little chances for success. In contrast, Penn might be willing to fly a kamikaze mission in what is likely to be his last political campaign."