A.B. in the News

Atlantic: Have Democrats Succeeded In Pre-Destroying Romney?

On February 2, 2012, The Atlantic reported:

Practically every day for months, Democrats and their allies have been hammering Romney like this. Unions, party committees at the national and state levels, independent groups such as American Bridge and Americans United for Change, and the Obama campaign itself have undertaken an unprecedented effort to tarnish the front-runner while virtually ignoring the rest of the GOP candidates. And it appears to be working.

[…]

The Democrats have decided it’s worth that risk. And they believe their furious efforts are having an effect.

“I’ve been happy with some of the criticisms we’ve been able to land on Romney, because I think it starts the debate,” said Rodell Mollineau, president of American Bridge 21st Century, which focuses on tracking and opposition research. He pointed to the group’s work highlighting Romney’s various inartful comments about money, from “corporations are people” to “I like firing people.”

“They’re smaller things, but I think after a while we’ve been able to add them up,” Mollineau said. “It all funnels into that narrative that he is the guy that’s not on the side of the middle class.”

The modern media landscape allows limitless venues for this type of information, from social media to a novel crops of online news outlets and the partisan blogosphere, he noted. “You can start to shape the narrative earlier, so when you do get to the general election, those narratives are already there,” he said.

And Mollineau was unapologetic about the focus on Romney. “They all have their flaws,” he said of the other GOP candidates. “But when you’re the front-runner, you’re going to get more scrutiny. You just are.”

Read the full story here.