As Herman Cain rises in the polls, Beltway Republicans are wondering whether he is running a “serious” campaign, complete with bustling staffers, field organizers, and national money raisers. His recent bus tour around Tennessee and northern Virginia, hawking his latest hardcover, has only increased chatter about his efforts in early primary states, which appear lackadaisical.
But behind Cain’s bookstore stops, his political team is building — just not in usual frontrunner fashion. Instead of betting the campaign on Iowa, or another winter primary, his small team of advisers is attempting to play nationally, using Cain’s ubiquity, on the airwaves and the Internet, to boost his candidacy.
With 75 days until the Iowa caucuses, sustaining a top-tier candidacy with media attention, debate fireworks, and online donations is risky. But Cain’s operation is confident in its strategy. They say their deep experience in grassroots advocacy, often outside of party lines, will sustain the campaign.
For more, check out Chuck Todd’s recent interview with Mark Block, Cain’s campaign manager: