Frank Luntz's Well-informed Focus Group
January 10, 2008
Fox News had a Frank Luntz focus group on just now after tonight's Republican debate. One of the participants actually just said, "You might say South Carolina is like the Dixville Notch of America." Aside from the fact that this analogy doesn't make much sense (wouldn't it be, you know, New Hampshire or Iowa?), are there that many actual, ordinary voters who know what the significance of Dixville Notch is? Isn't it just political junkies?
Mccain Prepping For Some South Carolina Mud-slinging
January 08, 2008
This just in from Sen. Straight Talk: MCCAIN 2008 LAUNCHES TRUTH SQUAD IN SOUTH CAROLINA TO COUNTER NEGATIVE ATTACKS For Immediate Release Contact: SC Press Office Tuesday, January 8, 2008 803-771-4465 COLUMBIA, SC -- U.S. Senator John McCain's presidential campaign today announced the formation of the Truth Squad in South Carolina to counter any negative or misleading attacks targeted at John McCain. "We saw what happened in Iowa with the negative attacks.
Does Huckabee Hurt Romney--or Giuliani?
December 11, 2007
There was a moment just a few weeks ago when Mitt Romney, despite anemic numbers in national polling, appeared poised to run the table in the early primaries and ride the momentum to the GOP nomination. He'd win Iowa handily, use that win to turn a close race with Giuliani in New Hampshire into a easy victory, then take Michigan and hopefully South Carolina in quick succession. Then along came Mike Huckabee who, out of nowhere, has ascended to a tie or small lead over Romney in Iowa, and a virtual tie with Giuliani in national polls.
Huckabee In The Elephants' Graveyard
December 08, 2007
A recent incident in Greenville, SC reminds me why it's unlikely that Mike Huckabee will make it to the nomination. (Though a liberal can always hope.) As Mike Crowley explained last month, when the GOP establishment dislikes an insurgent candidate--and they haven't liked one since Ronald Reagan--they use legendarily vicious smear tactics to kill his candidacy in South Carolina. When Mike wrote his piece, South Carolina looked like a toss-up because the Republican establishment was about evenly divided between Romney, Giuliani, Thompson, and McCain.
Is Romney Running Away With It?
November 09, 2007
For all the attention Rudy Giuliani got with that Pat Robertson endorsement earlier this week, the numbers increasingly suggest Romney is going to be the GOP nominee.
South Of The Border
June 21, 2007
What is it about the South Carolina GOP primary and dirty tricks? The Boston Globe reports on the anti-Mormon smear campaign against Mitt Romney that's happening everywhere--but appears to be particularly intense in the Palmetto State: There have been numerous anonymous attacks, too, such as an unsigned, eight-page screed that arrived last month in the mailboxes of influential South Carolina Republicans charging that Mormonism was a "politically dangerous" religion founded on a hoax.
May 21, 2007
COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA WILLIAM “RUSTY” DEPASS named his dogs Goldwater, Reagan, and Bush. He is, needless to say, a conservative man, one who lives in a conservative state where the psychological scars of the Civil War still run deep. Six bronze stars on the west wall of the Capitol building here in Columbia mark the trajectory of Sherman’s 1865 cannon fire from across the Congaree River. A state senator points me to the deep gouges on the building’s banisters—gashes left, hesays, by the sabers of Union officers charging the stairs on horseback.
May 18, 2007
I'm an enormous fan of E.J. Dionne, and can only imagine how difficult it must be to come up with two original theses for the op-ed page every week. But his column today seems to me a major stretch. His point is that conservative orthodoxy is in a state of collapse. His evidence is that, "In Tuesday's Republican presidential debate in South Carolina, every leading candidate declared independence from some piece of dogma or another"--Giuliani on abortion, Huckabee on taxes, McCain on torture, Romney on education.
Don't Look Back
April 17, 2007
Seeing as how John McCain has hitched himself to President Bush, he doesn't really have a choice in the matter, but it's interesting nonetheless to see just how hard he's working to, uh, put the 2000 South Carolina primary behind him. From a recent interview he did with GQ (via PoliticalInsider): Last time you entered the presidential arena, South Carolina got pretty hot. What do you think happened? I was beaten by President Bush because he had the financial and political base.
Bad Day For Rove
March 16, 2007
Not only did those emails about his involvement in the U.S. attorney purge come to light; he faced a question about that old skeleton in the Bush closet--the sliming of John McCain in the 2000 South Carolina primaries--during an appearance at Troy University. His response that the Bush campaign had nothing to do with spreading rumors that McCain had an illegitimate interracial child seems a bit strained, don't you think? "Do you think people of South Carolina find it attractive to hear that kind of charge made against John McCain," Rove asked at the Troy University event.