campaign adviser

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Italian Political Ad Blasts David Axelrod as 'Axl Rose'

White House guru gets into Italian politics

(Newser) - David Axelrod lost a mustache, but gained a ... headband? President Obama's campaign guru, who shaved his 'stache for charity, is now advising a candidate for the premiership of Italy—where opponents have compared him to Guns 'N' Roses frontman Axl Rose, Politico reports. An ad attacking Axelrod'... More »

Romney Adviser 'Treats Mitt Like a Cardboard Cutout'

Stuart Stevens 'too hip to walk through fire': Maureen Dowd

(Newser) - Poor Stuart Stevens: Already derided by political insiders and slammed by conservatives , Mitt Romney's artsy, unpredictable top strategy guy today gets a grilling from Maureen Dowd. "You get the sense that the strategist considers himself cooler than the candidate, that he’s too hip to walk through fire... More »

Stephanie Cutter: The Democrat Who 'Rose From the Grave'

John Kerry's 2004 campaign nearly ended her career

(Newser) - That tenacious Democrat you see debating on Sunday news shows? Her name is Stephanie Cutter, and only eight years ago her political career was all but dead, Politico reports. Cutter was communications adviser on John Kerry's 2004 campaign, and received much of the blame for its failure—with one... More »

Romney Camp Full of Lobbyists

Top GOP influence peddlers fill his 'cabinet,' and policy teams

(Newser) - Mitt Romney occasionally touts himself as a Washington outsider, but he hangs out with an awful lot of lobbyists, the New York Times observes. Romney's "kitchen cabinet" includes some of the top Republican influence peddlers in the business, including Charles Black, Wayne Berman, and Vin Weber, all of... More »

Get Ready for Earful From Obama Aides

President needs trash-talking surrogates ahead of election 2012: Michael Scherer

(Newser) - Amid press conferences and big speeches, President Obama spent his first two years in office as “his own messenger.” But expect that to change in the run-up to the next election, writes Michael Scherer in Time . In those first two years, Obama lacked a solid team of spokespeople;... More »

Carville to Advise Karzai Challenger

Says move shouldn't be seen as US looking for change in Afghan leadership

(Newser) - James Carville is headed to Kabul to advise one of Hamid Karzai’s challengers in Afghanistan’s upcoming election, Bloomberg reports. Carville has close ties to Hillary Clinton, but says the move shouldn’t be seen as a sign the Obama administration is pushing for a leadership change. “I... More »

McCain's Campaign Chief: He Never Had a Chance

(Newser) - The man who ran John McCain's campaign said his defeat was nearly preordained, reports Politico. It was "the strategic equivalent of throwing a football through a tire at 50 yards,” said Steve Schmidt. Given the ascendancy of Barack Obama—"the unfinished Bobby Kennedy campaign"—the unpopularity... More »

Obama Sneaks Power Back Into the Mix

Adviser who called Clinton 'monster' lands national security role

(Newser) - Barack Obama’s national security team seems to consist entirely of people known for speaking their minds, observes Ben Smith of Politico, and none moreso than new NSC staff member Samantha Power, best known for calling Hillary Clinton “a monster.” She was booted for the incident, but 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 »

McCain's a Mystery Even to Himself

He's fuzzy on number of houses, unreliable as his own spokeman

(Newser) - A mystery called John McCain lurks at the heart of the presidential race, Eugene Robinson writes in the Washington Post. The candidate remains "undefined" and "full of contradictions," Robinson writes. In fact, with McCain's bizarre admission that he isn't sure how many houses he has, "there... More »

Bill Sad Over Hillary's Loss: Obama Adviser

Edwards' affair drowns out talk of Russia on Sunday shows

(Newser) - The buzz on John Edwards' love affair drowned out talk of Russia's conflict with Georgia on today's morning talk shows, Politico reports. On Fox News Sunday, an Obama campaign topdog said Bill Clinton is still reeling from his wife's primary loss, and Karl Rove claimed on Face the Nation that... More »

Chicago Ties Sustain Obama

Key aides, friends go way back in Obama's hometown

(Newser) - Barack Obama’s Chicago home base has provided the candidate with a wealth of influential allies who serve him in a variety of ways, from the political to the personal, the Washington Post reports. While some play official campaign roles or are informal advisers, others keep Obama grounded on his... More »

'Sergeant Schmidt' to Whip McCain Camp Into Shape

Tough-talking GOP veteran takes the helm at HQ

(Newser) - The man Karl Rove nicknamed "Bullet" and John McCain calls "Sergeant Schmidt" has taken over day-to-day control of McCain's campaign, and his no-nonsense style is expected to make an immediate impact, Politico reports. Steve Schmidt, a hardworking veteran of the Bush and Schwarzenegger campaigns, is famed for his... More »

Obama Campaign Fixes Gender Balance

New female hires should help him reach out to Clinton voters

(Newser) - Barack Obama's campaign has been getting more women on board at high levels, Politico reports. Female activists welcome the new hires, while campaign insiders say the "boy's club" image that dogged Obama's campaign during the primaries was never correct. Among the biggest names are Patti Solis Doyle, former campaign... More »

McCain's Media Chief Steps Down

McKinnon doesn't want to work against Obama

(Newser) - John McCain's top media adviser is keeping his promise and stepping down from his role in the senator's campaign, the Washington Post reports. Mark McKinnon said last year that he had no desire to work against Barack Obama if he became the Democratic nominee. Insiders say the departure of the... More »

Valerie Jarrett: Obama's Sounding Board

Senior adviser is even-keeled, fiercely loyal, straight-talking

(Newser) - One of the strongest voices in Barack Obama's camp is that of longtime friend and confidante Valerie Jarrett, the Wall Street Journal writes. The woman who was once Michelle Obama's boss is now "practically a sister" to the couple, and her political savvy has proved invaluable to Obama's campaign—... More »

Obama Gears Up for GOP Smears

Camp McCain is seeking ways to attack without seeming racist

(Newser) - John McCain is prepping for a smear campaign this summer while camp Obama, ever cool and controlled, awaits the first strike. "It's going to be Swift Boat times five on both sides," said one McCain adviser who expects Obama to return fire. McCain's challenge is to hit above... 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 »

The Tug of War Over John McCain's Soul

Neocons, pragmatists battle for influence with Republican candidate

(Newser) - Republican “pragmatists” are growing uneasy seeing John McCain consorting with prominent neoconservatives, the New York Times reports. They fear McCain’s foreign policy isn’t as crystallized as it seems, and could be influenced by neocon advisers like John Bolton. “It might be too strong to say a... More »

Karl Rove, Ken Mehlman Advise McCain Campaign

More Bush buddies work for senator

(Newser) - Major Bush pals Ken Mehlman and Karl Rove are jumping aboard the Straight Talk Express, both informally advising John McCain, a top aide to the GOP hopeful tells Politico. Mehlman, who ran Bush’s 2004 campaign, is an unpaid, outside adviser, while Rove recently donated to McCain and had a... More »

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