This week, a super PAC supporting Obama has produced a commercial featuring Joe Soptic, who was fired from a plant that was taken over by Bain Capital, the firm founded by Mitt Romney. In the commercial, Soptic implies that his dismissal from the company led to a loss of health insurance and contributed to the death of his wife. Never mind that she died seven years after Romney had left Bain Capital and five years after the plant was closed.
Soptic was also featured on the Obama campaign website, in a series of Obama campaign commercials, and participated in an Obama campaign phone conference. So, despite clear laws preventing any connection between the super PAC and the Obama campaign, there was obvious coordination. The Obama campaign’s claim that it had nothing to do with the super PAC commercial is laughable and Romney needs to file an official complaint about this misconduct.
The Romney campaign also needs to stop playing nice and start fighting fire with fire. Top adviser Eric Fehrnstrom said the campaign would take the “high ground.” Well, this strategy is a sure loser for the Romney campaign. Republican presidential candidate Bob Dole took the high ground in 1996 and was shellacked by Bill Clinton. In 2008, John McCain took the high ground and we all know what happened in that race.
To combat a campaign that is living in the political gutter, throwing dirt and filling the airwaves with lies, the Romney campaign will have to get their hands dirty. Negative campaigning may be distasteful, but it works.
Recent polls show that the Obama onslaught is working. The President is leading Romney by 9 points in new CNN and Fox News polls and is 7 points ahead in the latest Reuters poll.
Clearly the current Romney strategy is failing and it is time for an adjustment in attitude and personnel. Fehrnstrom who claimed that despite the Supreme Court decision Obamacare was not a tax, but a mandate, should be fired. Spokeswoman Andrea Saul, who claimed that if Soptic and his wife “had been in Massachusetts, under Governor Romney’s health care plan, they would have had health care,” should be fired. Talk show host Laura Ingraham said that Saul had given the Obama campaign a “big fat wet kiss.”
Defeating an incumbent President with over a billion dollars in his war chest and a supportive media, will require a Herculean effort. Romney will have to get nasty, just like he did in the Republican primaries in 2008 and 2012. He had no trouble attacking his Republican rivals. Likewise, he should not hesitate in playing hardball against President Obama. If he is worried he will be called a racist, he will lose. Republicans are always unfairly called racists, Romney needs to get used to it and go for victory.
There is a mountain of material to use in attacking the Obama record. The President has compiled one of the worst records in presidential history. His stewardship of the economy has been an utter disaster and the American people know this. Romney needs to make this campaign a referendum on the Obama record by asking voters the simple question Ronald Reagan posed in his 1980 debate against Jimmy Carter, “Are you better off than you were four years ago?”
Of course, the answer is a resounding “No” for the vast majority of Americans, which is why Obama is trying to shift the focus to Romney’s taxes and his actions at Bain Capital. Romney needs to stress that he provided two years of tax returns and he’ll provide more if Obama releases his education and passport records. Such an offer will stop the Obama campaign cold in its tracks. Obama has spent millions protecting the privacy of his college and passport history and will never release that information.
Regarding Bain Capital, Romney provided jobs and opportunities for thousands of Americans by investing in companies which prospered. His record in the private sector is a big plus and a stark contrast to Obama who has no private sector experience.
All Barack Obama is doing today is attacking success, engaging in class warfare and the politics of personal destruction. As noted by commentator Pat Buchanan, “Obama has steadily diminished both himself and the office he holds. Remarkable what a fear of defeat and a loss of power can do to a man.”
Romney needs to make this disgusting behavior the centerpiece of his campaign. If he does not, he will lose, sentencing the nation to four more years of Obama unfettered, unplugged by worries about re-election and unleashed on the American people. Let’s hope and pray this nightmare does not come true.
Jeff Crouere is a native of New Orleans, LA and he is the host of a Louisiana based program, “Ringside Politics,” which airs at 7:30 p.m. Fri. and 10:00 p.m. Sun. on WLAE-TV 32, a PBS station, and 7 till 11 a.m.weekdays on WGSO 990 AM in New Orleans and the Northshore. For more information, visit his web site at www.ringsidepolitics.com. E-mail him at [email protected].
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