The Perry campaign has often touted retail politics as Perry’s great strength, and now, with just weeks to go to the Iowa caucuses, is planning to one big, last retail effort. Perry will tour the state in a campaign bus for 14 days, stopping in 44 cities, reports the Des Moines Register.
Once again, without directly mentioning Newt Gingrich, the Romney campaign is pushing hard in this new TV ad the message that Mitt Romney has a long marriage:
Transcript of the ad, as provided by the campaign:
I think people understand that I’m a man of steadiness and constancy. I don’t think you’re going to find somebody who has more of those attributes than I do. I’ve been married to the same woman for 25 – excuse me, I’ll get in trouble – for 42 years. I’ve been in the same church my entire life. I worked at one company, Bain, for 25 years. And I left that to go off and help save the Olympic Games. If I’m President of the United States, I will be true to my family, to my faith, and to our country, and I will never apologize for the United States of America. “I’m Mitt Romney, and I approve this message.
Politico’s Mike Allen reports:
Some Obama aides are exultant about running against a candidate with so much baggage and bad history. They generally view Romney as a stronger, more dangerous opponent, even if the former House speaker is likely to shine in debates. The feeling — or hope — among the campaign’s upper echelon is that the Romney-Gingrich fight just might last until June, as long as Obama-Clinton in 2008, with deeply unpredictable results.
But there’s also a wary recognition that Gingrich may be catching a wave that is both powerful and unpredictable.
They worry that Gingrich would be an erratic opponent, and therefore harder to handle than the relatively predictable Romney. Running against him may prove more difficult than it looks at first blush.
“It would be a nastier, more intense campaign,” said the Democrat close to the White House. “Newt has a history of getting people to rise to his bait. The president would have to stay mellow, steady Eddie.”
The Obama campaign has been pretty consistent about viewing Romney as the likely opponent — to the extent that the Romney campaign has started harping on how “obsessed” Obama is with Romney. It’ll be an interesting shift if they start targeting Gingrich.