Giuliani Blog Tracking the likely Presidential candidacy of Rudy Giuliani

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Does Organization Matter?

For all the arguments made at Giuliani Blog and Race42008 for why Rudy is the frontrunner, the one our critics keep coming back to is organization. My macro argument has been that the fundamentals --bio, attributes, likeability -- matter far more than organization. Good organization provides that critical 2-3 points in a close race. The candidate supplies everything else. A candidate who spits in the face of the Commander-in-Chief (not to mention the base) who's got a good kitchen cabinet is just lipstick on a pig.

But let's for a moment confront the organization question on its own terms.

To hear certain Beltway media types tell it, everyone else is organizing down to the precinct in Iowa except Rudy.

But that's not strictly true. McCain and Romney have made a point of organizing early. I touched on this tangentially in an earlier post, but both are doing it out of weakness to a certain extent. McCain to prove he can play nice with the establishment and hopefully outrun the conservative new media tsunami that's about to overcome him. And Romney, as a newcomer with no natural organization outside Massachusetts (and perhaps Utah). Romney's early seed-laying has arguably been more impressive as he has yet to break out of single digits in the polls and people are still signing up.

Of the other serious candidates -- Rudy, Allen, Frist, Newt, and Huckabee -- none have organized to the extent McCain and Romney have. This has created a nice sideshow between the two of them but has not seriously dented Rudy's (growing) lead in the polls and his excellent standing with conservatives.

Setting Rudy aside for a moment, let's take a look at where the other campaigns stand organization-wise.

Allen: In retrospect, Allen probably wishes he hadn't run for re-election -- he'd have had a statewide resume 2 1/2 times as long as Mitt Romney's after making the same move. Allen has hired Dick Wadhams as his Karl Rove, is retaining long time strategist Chris LaCivita and has Ed Gillespie and Mary Matalin as advisors but otherwise has not done any hiring in the early states, and his re-election campaign has put the kibosh on in-person campaigning for 2008. Whether or not Allen will fare well after these last two months is another question, but ultimately, Allen made the calculation to run for re-election to the Senate when he was a frontrunning Republican candidate knowing that he'd have to take a pass on hiring Iowa, New Hampshire, and South Carolina staff. It was a risk his seasoned senior staff was entirely willing to make, figuring there'd be plenty of talent to be had after the midterm elections (Hillary has made the same calculation). He may have made a mistake -- but for entirely different reasons.

Frist: Bill Frist has named Brian Kennedy, a former Terry Branstad aide, as his Iowa Chairman but has otherwise been quiet on the hiring front. Granted, his stock in Republican circles isn't the highest right now, but he did have the warewithall to bus hundreds of activists in to vote for him at the SRLC and did receive about 15% of non-Tennessee votes. His missteps as Majority Leader haven't hurt his poll numbers as badly as they could have and he's one or two votes away from ending his tenure on a high note. The further away he gets from that radioactive job, the better he looks. Granted, it's a bit of a stretch, but he could probably build a Romney-like organization if he wanted to. (I mean, even Pataki is hiring people.) For whatever reason, he hasn't.

Newt: Newt is a one-man traveling roadshow. Unless rumors about Vin Weber are to believed, no serious insiders, either nationally or in the states, have signed on to Team Newt. Like Rudy, I believe he enjoys a lot of closet support in surprising quarters, and I'm actually rather bullish on him doing well in the early states and with no organization. Republicans love the guy, and it probably wouldn't stop him from getting 20 percent from frustrated conservatives in Iowa. But they love Rudy even more, and that won't stop him from getting 30 percent plus.

Huckabee: Again, here's an example of a guy with Romney-like potential, who's openly campaigning in Iowa, who fits a perfect niche (Southern social conservative), and who hasn't signed on anyone of note in the early states. Washington wags have practically begged him to do so. Still, no dice.

None of this is to take away from the remarkable job that McCain and Romney have done in places like Michigan and South Carolina. In McCain's case, it's rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic, especially after the last week, but nonetheless, hats off.

But it strikes me that the best campaign talent in America probably isn't sitting around waiting for calls from 2008 contenders. They're focused on 2006 and fighting big campaigns -- Schwarzenegger in California, Kennedy in Minnesota, Santorum in Pennsylvania, among others -- or they're at the national party committees or at the White House.

After November, I'm not sure what sense it would make for them to join a top-heavy beast like the Straight Talk Express, where Weaver's going to be calling all the shots anyway and the Bushies will just be for show. With all the folks who have supposedly signed on, people who were very senior in past Republican Presidential campaigns are going to be relegated to second tier position. McCain is running the kind of Noah's Ark campaign that Kerry and Gore ran, and in the end it's just not effective. For many, it will prove a beneficial for their careers bet to join a candidate like Rudy, misunderestimated by the press, where they can have wide latitude without the bureaucracy.

And Rudy's no slouch when it comes to running a tight ship (just ask his mayoral staff). Rudy has long time aides Chris Henick (Karl Rove's former deputy), Tony Carbonetti (his Mayoral chief of staff), and Sunny Mindel (his communications guru). It's not at all dissimilar to Bush's "Iron Triangle" of Karl Rove, Joe Allbaugh, and Karen Hughes. And like Rudy, Bush was later to the game of building an organization, staying coy about his plans as he ran for re-election in 1998, telling people "keep your powder dry" but not inking anyone. Also like Rudy, the Washington people hated it and complained to the press about the unseasoned operatives at the helm in Austin.

Well, we all saw how that worked out.

Find this post interesting? Get posts
from this blog in your inbox once a day:


At 10:09 PM, Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

ninest123 10.15
ralph lauren polo, uggs outlet, replica watches, chanel handbags, longchamp bags, longchamp outlet, prada outlet, michael kors outlet, burberry outlet, louboutin uk, louis vuitton outlet, prada handbags, tory burch outlet, replica watches, uggs on sale, nike free, michael kors outlet store, michael kors handbags, louis vuitton handbags, oakley sunglasses, gucci handbags, louis vuitton outlet online, cheap oakley sunglasses, louis vuitton, tiffany jewelry, louis vuitton outlet, ray ban sunglasses, longchamp outlet, oakley sunglasses, ralph lauren outlet, michael kors outlet online, michael kors outlet online, kate spade, christian louboutin, uggs on sale, burberry factory outlet, michael kors, nike air max, ray ban sunglasses, nike outlet, oakley sunglasses, tiffany jewelry, christian louboutin, uggs outlet, ray ban sunglasses, cheap jordans, uggs on sale, louboutin shoes

At 10:16 PM, Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

michael kors, new balance, nike free pas cher, nike air force, michael kors, lululemon outlet, converse, lunette oakley pas cher, timberland pas cher, true religion outlet, coach purses, lunette ray ban pas cher, nike tn pas cher, jordan pas cher, vanessa bruno pas cher, coach outlet store online, sac guess pas cher, polo ralph lauren uk, nike roshe uk, vans pas cher, mulberry uk, nike air max pas cher, ray ban uk, abercrombie and fitch, hermes pas cher, nike air max uk, coach outlet, true religion outlet, north face uk, true religion outlet, abercrombie and fitch UK, longchamp soldes, true religion jeans, north face pas cher, kate spade outlet, hogan sito ufficiale, michael kors uk, nike blazer pas cher, nike air max uk, nike free, nike air max, nike roshe run pas cher, louboutin pas cher, michael kors outlet online, burberry pas cher, ralph lauren pas cher, longchamp pas cher, polo lacoste pas cher, coach outlet

At 10:16 PM, Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

new balance shoes, soccer jerseys, vans scarpe, valentino shoes, ray ban, reebok outlet, abercrombie, nike roshe run, soccer shoes, beats by dre, salvatore ferragamo, polo ralph lauren, babyliss pro, nike air huarache, celine handbags, nfl jerseys, longchamp uk, ghd hair, hollister, iphone cases, converse shoes outlet, giuseppe zanotti, insanity workout, mcm handbags, mac cosmetics, herve leger, jimmy choo outlet, timberland boots, lululemon outlet, nike trainers uk, p90x workout, nike air max, hermes handbags, oakley, chi flat iron, abercrombie and fitch, vans outlet, converse, softball bats, gucci, nike air max, asics running shoes, louboutin, hollister clothing, bottega veneta, instyler ionic styler, mont blanc, north face outlet, north face outlet, wedding dresses, hollister uk, oakley sunglasses

At 10:18 PM, Blogger ninest123 Ninest said...

moncler uk, moncler, michael kors outlet, moncler, juicy couture outlet, supra shoes, michael kors outlet online, wedding dresses uk, canada goose, canada goose outlet, pandora jewelry, doke & gabbana, coach outlet, louis vuitton uk, sac louis vuitton, links of london uk, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, moncler pas cher, toms shoes, canada goose, barbour jackets uk, swarovski jewelry, sac louis vuitton, canada goose outlet, moncler, moncler, canada goose jackets, michael kors handbags, marc jacobs, pandora uk, moncler jackets, ugg uk, juicy couture outlet, canada goose uk, moncler outlet, barbour, pandora jewelry, hollister, thomas sabo uk, replica watches, louis vuitton, bottes ugg pas cher, pandora charms, lancel, louis vuitton, canada goose jackets, montre pas cher, swarovski uk, karen millen uk, canada goose pas cher, ugg pas cher
ninest123 10.15

At 9:06 AM, Blogger 03 Yang said...

burberry sunglasses
chanel sunglasses
cartier sunglasses
cartier watches
cazal sunglasses
louis vuitton sunglasses
cartier outlet
dior sunglasses
versace sunglasses
chrome hearts
police sunglasses
prada sunglasses
chrome hearts outlet
gucci sunglasses

At 8:00 AM, Blogger LCc 03 said...

air max 2017
roshe shoes
adidas ultra boost
adidas nmd
fitflops sale clearance
nike air force
adidas yeezy boost
yeezy boost 350 v2
michael kors outlet
nike polo


Post a Comment

<< Home