political strategists

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80% of Campaign Money Wasted: Strategists

'The problem is, we don't know which 80%'

(Newser) - Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are raising unprecedented amounts of money for their presidential campaigns, and most of it won't matter at all, a pair of strategists tell NPR . "You don't need that much money. It's ridiculous," says Republican strategist Mark McKinnon. "I was... More »

Politifact Names 'Lie of the Year'

Health care reform no 'government takeover'

(Newser) - This year’s biggest political lie is the phrase “a government takeover of health care,” holds the nonpartisan fact-checking group Politifact . The term "government takeover" was suggested by a GOP strategist, who called on Republican leaders to use it to refer to health care reform—and use... More »

The Republican Strategy: Be the Party of 'Hell No'

Inside the GOP's 2-year plan to harass and unseat Democrats

(Newser) - In January 2009, when Democrats were high on hope and change, House Republicans held a strategy meeting. “If the goal of the majority is to govern, what is the purpose of the minority?” John Boehner and Eric Cantor asked. “The purpose of the minority, is to become the... More »

Dems to Obama: Gut Your Team

Expecting big losses, they're pushing for big changes

(Newser) - Pressure is mounting on President Obama to gut his inner circle, which House Democrats blame for crafting a losing 2010 strategy. In recent weeks, David Axelrod has held strategy sessions with a series of senior Democratic strategists and lawmakers, but many participants walked away so frustrated that they quit and... More »

Tea Party Dropped $103K on Miller Strategy Cruises

Critics not happy with lavish accommodations

(Newser) - The Tea Party Express took to the high seas this past summer, spending $103,000 to send six political action committee staffers on four back-to-back cruises over seven weeks. Of course, they were working the whole time—strategizing for Alaska’s upset-winner Joe Miller while at sea, and holding press... More »

Advice for Sarah Palin 2012

A former Bush aide gives Sarah Barracuda some strategy tips

(Newser) - Party wisemen may not take her seriously, but Sarah Palin’s got a genuine shot at being the 2012 Republican nominee. And ex-Bush aide Matt Latimer, writing for the Daily Beast , has some advice on how she can win:
  • Explain why she quit: Right now it looks like she fled
... More »

Carville: GOP Can't Abandon Christian Right

'Their party would crumble' otherwise, Dem strategist argues

(Newser) - Analysts who say the Republicans should rethink their social platform and move away from the Christian right are off their rockers, James Carville tells the Huffington Post. “Their party would crumble,” the Democratic strategist says. A whopping 90% of conservative, white, married Christians identify themselves as Republicans, up... More »

Edwards Cost Clinton Dearly: Penn

Ex-senator's fall from grace touches off second-guessing

(Newser) - Hillary Clinton strategist Mark Penn is kicking himself in the wake of reports that Elizabeth Edwards thinks her husband shouldn't have run for president, ABC News reports. If news of John Edwards' infidelity had forced him to drop out of the race, Penn said, “No question in my mind,... More »

Pay Cut, Scrutiny Await Axelrod in DC

Consultant's finances would come into sharp focus

(Newser) - David Axelrod would pay a steep price to follow his most famous client to the White House, Politico reports. Barack Obama’s right-hand man would probably have to sell his stakes in the lucrative consulting firms he founded  and open his finances to public scrutiny. Axelrod’s firms have collected... More »

Role in White House for Obama Strategist?

Strategist Axelrod seen as key policy cog, but he could be a target in Washington

(Newser) - With Barack Obama holding a lead in the polls, Democrats have begun discussing what, if any, role his top campaign strategist might have in an Obama White House, Politico reports. David Axelrod, say those who know him, is seriously weighing an administration position; where he ends up could be key... More »

Neither Candidate Is Ready to Live Here: Noonan

Obama, McCain fail to inspire stressed American public

(Newser) - We did have an October surprise, after all, in the form of an economic collapse, and it "all but certainly decided the race," writes Peggy Noonan in the Wall Street Journal. But as she watches Democrats' 'smug triumphalism" and angry Republicans' finger-pointing, Noonan can't help but think that... More »

McCain Hires Strategist Who Smeared Him

Tucker Eskew, part of party's 'darker side,' attacked Mac in 2000

(Newser) - Republican strategist Tucker Eskew, who helped smear John McCain in the 2000 primaries, is now on board the GOP candidate’s campaign and will prep Sarah Palin for her role, reports Jake Tapper on ABC News. “He's one of the best and most collaborative talents in Republican politics,”... More »

The Man, and the Message, McCain's Been Missing

Enter '00 mastermind Mike Murphy

(Newser) - Mike Murphy, the irreverent mastermind behind John McCain’s 2000 presidential bid, is poised to swoop in and rescue his stalled 2008 effort, writes William Kristol in the New York Times. Murphy sat out the primaries because he was close to both Romney and McCain, but with McCain’s machine... More »

6 Maxims for Navigating the VP Search

Media often miss behind-the-scenes political intrigue

(Newser) - While pundits stoke the frenzy around potential vice-presidential candidates, they rarely see what actually happens behind the campaign curtain. In Men's Vogue, Lloyd Grove offers six maxims to help make sense of the "veepstakes" hype:
  • Presidential hopefuls seek input from several quarters to curry favor, though most of it
... More »

Rove: From Politics to Punditry

News networks picking up commentators with party connections

(Newser) - To stoke interest in cutthroat election coverage, cable news networks and other outlets are recruiting political strategists with credentials and big-time party connections, the New York Times reports. One of the newest pundits? None other than Karl Rove, now an analyst for Fox News and contributor to Newsweek and the ... More »

David Axelrod: Obama's Mastermind —and No. 1 Fan

He gets passionate about his candidates

(Newser) - David Axelrod isn’t just a political hired gun. Instead, Barack Obama’s chief strategist backs his candidates with the same passion he reserves for his beloved Cubs and Bulls, the Washington Post reports in a lengthy profile. “He loves his candidates when he starts. He’s usually let... More »

Clinton Gets Cold Shoulder From GOP

Republicans tuning her out as they focus attacks on Obama

(Newser) - Republican strategists are tuning out Hillary Clinton as they ramp up their attacks on Barack Obama, writes Jonathan Martin in Politico. The national party is increasingly focusing its ads and money on Obama, and John McCain's camp also puts a definite emphasis on him. A new daily email to reporters... More »

$14M Penn Tab Underscores Consultants' Fleecing Spree

Ex-strategist made up 9% of Clinton spending

(Newser) - Mark Penn leaves Hillary Clinton’s campaign with a hefty $14 million lining his own pockets, a new high in the skyrocketing world of campaign consultancy, and some 9% of all money Clinton has laid out to date. But ordinary Americans are newly in the position of having their donations... More »

Clinton Staff Glad to See Penn's Exit

Morale might improve, but shift in strategy unlikely at this late hour

(Newser) - Mark Penn might have shaped the Clinton campaign, but he wasn’t well liked within it, Ben Smith writes in Politico. Some blamed him for the campaign's strategic blunders, while others were irked by his huge salary—he’s billed Clinton $13 million—and private-sector distractions. “It was very... More »

Penn Quits as Clinton Strategist

Top adviser out after Colombia trade meeting flap

(Newser) - Hillary Clinton's top strategist stepped down today after drawing fire for his trade meeting with a Colombian envoy last week, the Wall Street Journal reports. Clinton advisers said Mark Penn was all but pushed out, a move many in the camp had sought after Clinton lost key primary races. But... More »

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