September 2012

One President At A Time

The Optics Of Mitt's Bad Month

Mitt Romney's had a really bad September. His launch coming off the convention was a dud. Then, just as the inside blame spilled onto news pages, Romney made an ill-advised decision to break a one-day political cease-fire on 9/11 to critique the President's handling of a national security crisis in the middle east. Most recently, he's come under scrutiny for remarks at a past fundraising event that he will never convince the 47% of Americans who support the President that "they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives." He's lost control of his (jobs and the economy) message and the campaign is way off step.

The Meltdown: Four Years Ago Today

When Outside Events Crowd The Campaign Trail

It was early Monday morning, September 15.  During my slow walk to work through the backstreets of Chicago, I carefully replayed a conversation in my head from six months before with my close colleague and the campaign's CFO, Marianne Markowitz.  Back then, in March, Marianne had been reacting to reports that renowned investment bank Bear Stearns was failing.

"This is bad news, Henry," Marianne exclaimed when she arrived at work.  "It's a really big deal," she added, shaking her head for emphasis.

Five Reasons To Be Hope And Change-ful

President Obama's Convention Calculus

The scores are coming in and it's clear that President Obama aced his latest test. All indicators show that more voters were moved by last week's Democratic convention than by the Republican gathering in Tampa days before. Here is the latest evidence coming from a Gallup report released on Monday:

1.   Forty-three percent liked President Obama's acceptance speech five percent more than Romney could show following his convention. In fact, that only 38% rated the Governor's address as "excellent or good" is the lowest tally since Gallup began asking the question back in 1996. It gets gloomier for the Romney folks. Ten percent of respondents said that the Republican nominee's speech was "terrible," the worst result on Gallup's books.

Whachu Talkin' Bout Willard?

The Math Behind Mitt Romney's Curious Convention Speech

It was Mitt's moment. The speech of his career. Standing before his party's faithful at the Republican National Convention on Thursday night, the Governor's job was three-fold. First, he had to remind voters that he was the fixer. Second, he had to convince them he was someone who could be trusted. Finally, he had to be...well, real. He had to shed that robot image. This was the "humanizing of Mitt" convention the famous "etch a sketch" moment his team had long envisioned.

But as I listened, it seemed as if something had gone wrong with Mitt's data box. Midway into his speech, standing before a room filled with 20,000 die-hard Republicans, Romney broke into a curious riff. He had a message for his fellow partisans that they had apparently chosen the wrong man in 2008. No, it wasn't John McCain he was speaking of.  It seems that they had gone wrong as a party with ... Barack Obama.