Sunday, September 16, 2012

Circular firing squad starts

Here's a fairly long article based on interviews with Romney staffers, advisers and friends, which portrays a quite dysfunctional campaign.  Romney is reported to have "allowed seven distinct power centers to flourish inside his campaign."  It is revealed that Romney's convention speech was totally scrapped and rewritten in the 8 days before it was given, which likely contributed to the omission of mention of the war in Afghanistan.

But more important is that the internal story is being reported now.  This is not the sort of thing that should come out 7 weeks before the election, when people inside the campaigns are typically still dreaming of cushy appointments in the halls of power.  One doesn't run to spill the beans to a reporter if a post-win government job is still a possibility, so it seems at least some of Romney's staff have moved on to the cover-your-own-ass phase of things.  The author of the story, Mike Allen, is Politico's chief political reporter and is very well-respected inside the Beltway.  He is one of the more trustworthy reporters in Washington, so I'm sure his sources are legit.

The Romney campaign is at a critical juncture.  It needs to stay enough in the race that a good debate or two can get them in the lead.  After the week they just had, with conservatives attacking the candidate at the start, fumbling an opportunity with the Libya situation, and now signs his campaign is deserting him, he could find himself praying for a miracle.

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