Mitt Romney’s campaign builds its strength on the frame that the Republican candidate has more experience and knows the best solution to the current maze of the economy and the decisions to make to improve the economic situation of American families.
Only? There’s also an antithetical values and public character construction as opposed to everything President Obama represents.
If we add the expected arrogant superpower statements on International Affairs – pointing with the accusing finger at Russia and Iran- we’ll have a real approach that closely resembles the actual photograph of Former Massachusetts Governor.
Is that enough to win elections? It is necessary to provide diplomatic credentials, muscle and international leadership. So the chapter “trip abroad” has started with a tour to UK, Israel and Poland with a likely presidential schedule: interviews with prime ministers and opposition leaders, fundraising events, interviews with local & US media.
The main goal is not to lose the two-race of international leadership. 4 years later, the history remains and some images still hurt someone: Berlin, joined over 200,000 people.
So far the result of the Romney international tour is this. With the London’s mayor mockery included, the alarms of the campaign team started to sound and the mode “communication management on the defensive damage” was on, announcing that the fundraising event planned in Israel will not be public nor reporters will have access.
Despite this unmomentum -we’ll see the effects on undecided and independent voters- Romney’s campaign has 3 advantage moments to win over the Obama campaign:
1. the decision of who will join Romney as vice president. Romney’s team is playing brilliantly with the timing on this issue. The media interest is consistent and attention and expectations exists. The campaign has the Public Opinion at its best place: curious, attentive and eager to known. The decision is worth enough. The campaign leaks information about possible candidates names vetted depending on the week if it is positive or not.
The last few weeks the Republican team has join efforts on behalf of Condoleezza Rice: a woman not linked to President W. Bush economic legacy; not frowned upon religious groups and conservative base; and a frontrunner profile on National Security and International Affairs. If she had to replace the president, she would be the perfect person used to make decisions and deal with difficulties involved. However a brilliant technocrat does not guarantee a similar enthusiasm the base involved Sarah Palin’s appointment.
VP or Secretary of State? The debate is fascinating. Our opinion is Secretary of State.
More important than the person finally chosen, the awake of the base enthusiasm will probably be as important as other key factors for the leading research team. This unit is formed by the Campaign Manager, Matt Rhoades; Strategy Director, Stuart Stevens and one of the most reputable female senior advisor of the Republican Party, Beth Myers.
Which are the research team priorities?
- The popularity of the candidate in the swing/battleground states and if he/she can win any of these states;
- The available fundraisers list;
- Experience and his/her career services in Public and Private life (also the inconvenient and scandals), the donations received from pressure groups;
- Tax returns. Brilliantly and sarcastically, President Clinton alter ego, James Carville said:” the only person who has seen Mitt Romney’s tax returns was Senator McCain and then pick up Sarah Palin“.
Finally a complementary role is needed (gender, racial, regional, social groups, ideological…) that makes hence the ticket concept.
(It is ironic that the Romney team has access to all tax returns of all VP candidates and yet not his own campaign has release Romney’s.)
The person VPproposed by the Romney campaign will generate a current of sympathy, enthusiasm and important popularity.
This GOP momentum cannot be counterattacked by the Democratic campaign. Unless Obama makes a surprise unbalancing bold movement with Hillary Clinton’s appointment. Fact unlikely to happen.
2. Regardless the name of the Romney VP, the Republican campaign has a second turning point in his favor: post convention momentum.
Typically, the conventions reinforce the popularity of the campaigns. The 2004 Saint Paul, Minnesota, GOP convention is an exception. Closing ranks, party unity, and the common balloon party after the big ads, messages or commitments speeches based.
The Republican convention will be in Tampa (FL) -a swing-state- August 27th and 30th. Days of domestic & internal crescendo climax. The idea is the campaign to move this climax beyond the organization, especially to independent & undecided voters.
3 ½ days that will culminate in the Nomination Acceptance Speech and the photo op of the two leaders with a bold a clear message behind.
It is confirmed that President W. Bush (43) will not attend the Republican Convention. Sarah Palin has not yet received the invitation and Chris Christie has already been guaranteed to be a keynote speaker.
The Democratic convention will be in Charleston (NC) -a Republican polling state- from September 4th to 6rh.We have mentioned other time that the margin for effects or stunts in the Democratic campaign is less likely to happen. The Obama effect has cooled down: governing is to making decisions and saying no to own voters. This means disenchantment and disillusionment of the democratic base.
The script for the convention is almost written and closed. The same names and the same faces. This situation increases the pressure to the president’s Nomination Acceptance Speech. A Speech committed to make history. Tipping points & announcements are needed but there is little room for maneuver.
Despite this context, some believe that the Chicago team is not ready to surprise?
Therefore, the Democratic campaign faces a second handicap against the Republicans.
3. Final element and perhaps the most important one: voters’ enthusiasm. It’s clear the non-enthusiasm Romney produces to his followers: a non charismatic leader, most times going defensive and negative, his Mormon religion and the conservatives GOP bases vacuum. But this feelings are not perceived among the major GOP donors. For the second consecutive month Romney outspent Obama, and this trend will accelerate in the coming months.
The Democratic campaign also lives the lack of excitement and mobilization of its bases. Those wishes and desires for change, to achieve the impossible … have been disillusioned.
So, latest Gallup study quantifies the voting excitement is significantly higher among those this days in those who lean to vote Republicans than among those who lean on Democrats.
nother handicap for the Obama campaign are the likely 7% Dr. Jill Stein, US Green Party voters.
Economic indicators may worsen in the coming weeks, and in this tight presidential race, public demands more than an achievement record, a brave and courageous leadership.
The campaign is very much alive. Each heartbeat matter much more than we can imagine. The key on winning will be attitudes, values and courage.
- VP’s Office institutional evolution, via New York Times.
- Enthusiams voters, via Gallup.
- Real Clear Politics: last update of the Electoral College.
@aleixcuberes is @ingenia_pro Public Communication Consultant & Partner