If you like the Illinois GOP, you’ll love Mitt Romney, Part 7.
The Illinois Republican establishment has another thing in common with its favorite presidential candidate Mitt Romney. Both share the same tactics. Neither is interested in the truth nor the use of a campaign to present a positive vision (which they don’t have anyway).
For those of you who were paying attention eight years ago when U.S. Senate nominee Jack Ryan was pressured to drop out of the race (paving the way for Barack Obama’s rise), you might remember the GOP tag team here in Illinois. From state party chairman Judy Baar Topinka to former governor Jim Edgar, the lies and slander about Jack emanating from old guard Republicans was constant.
When it comes to presenting a positive vision for how they would govern according to GOP principles – well, you’ve never seen one from them. So there is no need to question why our Republican establishment feels so comfortable with Romney. Birds of a feather flock together indeed.
Below are a few excerpts from the press about Mitt’s slime machine that has spent most of its money attacking Newt Gingrich but is now aiming its sights on poor Rick Santorum. This first one from the New York Times is astounding. It’s Romney staffers basically admitting that they can’t win by selling Mitt – only by destroying Newt.
Behind the scenes, it was more than that. It was a call to arms employing all the visible and invisible tactics of political warfare. As recently as Wednesday, several Romney advisers, donors and supporters were speaking in terms of what losing in Florida would mean and how they could survive it.
If Mr. Romney does win here on Tuesday, it will have been through a blistering and unrelenting series of attacks. His campaign has pressed everything at its disposal into service to eviscerate Mr. Gingrich, painting him as an erratic, unreliable Washington insider in mailings and television advertisements, at two critical debates here (where his team made sure Mr. Romney had ample and vocal supporters in the audiences) and even by sending supporters to mock him at his own events.
Just three weeks earlier, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich was sailing high. He won the South Carolina primary and seemed headed for Florida with the wind at his back. That was before Mitt Romney ripped him apart with the toughest and nastiest ads I have ever witnessed.
A Restore Our Future spokesperson declined to reveal the content of the latest round of ads.
Before the Iowa caucuses, the super PAC launched multimillion-dollar attacks against Rick Perry and Gingrich, and both negative ad campaigns were instrumental in Romney’s strong finish in Iowa and his victory in Florida.
Negative ads by Romney worked to fend off the challenge of Newt Gingrich in recent weeks, and more are in the works against Santorum – although it’s unclear how successful they will be.
In a clear sign that attack ads are looming, the pro-Romney “Super PAC” Restore Our Future has notably ramped up its TV advertising in several states including Michigan…
“If they follow what they’ve done in the past, Rick Santorum won’t recognize himself when he looks in the mirror,” said Dave Carney, a Republican strategist who worked for Texas Governor Rick Perry’s presidential campaign. “He’ll get the stuffing knocked out of him over the next two weeks.”
Oh, and while the negative ads might be accomplishing the goal of dirtying up Mitt’s opponents, they sure aren’t inspiring voters to go to the polls. See this excerpt from AmericanThinker.com:
Mitt’s scorched earth has indeed come back to haunt not only him, but the entire party. Even Santorum can claim wins only with tiny voter populations that have been carpet-bombed with negativity. He has shown zero ability to promote enthusiasm or turnout either.
In a cycle when primary turnout should be at an all-time high, the hatred the candidates have for each other is trumping their love for the country and turning voters away in droves. There is no way this is a winning strategy in 2012. If one of these candidates does not re-apprehend what the voters are demanding, we will all be losers.