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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The gift of the GOP

David Axelrod must be chuckling in his Chicago campaign headquarters, thankful for the gifts coming his way from Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich.

The Final Two spent yesterday creating campaign commercials for Barack Obama, violating the Republican 11th Commandment with zinger upon zinger. It started when Our Man Myth lobbed a shell at Gingrich for taking $1.6 million from Freddie Mac. Newt responded with a fury:
“If Governor Romney would like to give back all the money he’s earned from bankrupting companies and laying off employees over his years at Bain, then I would be glad to then listen to him,’’ Gingrich said, referring to Bain Capital, Romney’s private equity firm.
Axelrod must have turned cartwheels after hearing that sound bite. But Gingrich wasn't through:
“I would bet you $10, not $10,000, that he won’t take the offer,’’ Gingrich added. The challenge echoed Saturday night’s debate, where Romney proposed a $10,000 bet with Governor Rick Perry of Texas.
At long last the GOP field is settling in, and things do not look great for Romney at the moment. Iowa Republicans appear to prefer Gingrich's hypocrisy over Romney's apostasy.

And with New Hampshire voting one month from today, Romney's lead has shrunk to single digits in some polls, bringing to mind the old truism that winning New Hampshire by less than expected is tantamount to a loss.

Ironically, Romney's worst nightmare is also his greatest weapon: Newt's mouth. That grandiose braggart is back in full flower after his near-death experience last summer, and he is reacting true to form, picking up on Romney's generous offer of front-runner status:
“I’m now, by a big margin, the front-runner,’’ Gingrich said in Londonderry, citing two new polls that show him ahead in Florida and South Carolina.
While Axelrod and the Obama brain trust are no doubt thanking their lucky stars, what passes for wise men in the GOP are no doubt sweating bullets:
In a University of New Hampshire poll of likely Republican primary voters released on Nov. 23, 57 percent said Romney could beat Obama; only 10 percent said Gingrich could.
That means a redoubling of the supposed New Hampshire firewall in the coming month in the form of a barrage of negative ads from both sides.

For Axelrod, it's the gift that keeps on giving.

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