A bunch of influential folks on the right (Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, Erick Ericson) are very upset at Mitt Romney campaign spokesperson Andrea Saul for fumbling a response of the Joe the Bummer (Joe Soptic) Obama Super PAC ad. That ad is so noxious that even Democrats and CNN are running away from it. So how does Saul handle questions about this ad from Fox’s Bill Hemmer? See for yourself:
First off, everyone complaining has very valid point. This is an absolutely horrible response on so many levels, not the least of which are the constant “Umm’s” coming from Saul and lack of coherent message from her.
Second, she actually engages the content of the ad which give the backlash against it marks another major tactical failure on her part. She should have laid out the facts that Joe the Bummer was a) offered a buyout by Bain, b) Romney didn’t work at Bain at the time of the plant closing, c) COBRA laws have been in effect since the Clinton era, so continuation of coverage was guaranteed, d) Soptic’s wife had other insurance coverage, and e) Soptic’s wife was diagnosed in 2001 and died in 2006 contrary to the impression that the ad gives.
Given Saul’s first failure in engaging in the content of the ad, her second (and more recognizable) failure was trying to make a point that if he lived in Romney’s state of Massachusetts that she would have been cared for. That of course opens a Pandora’s box of comparisons between Romneycare and Obamacare.
For all that fail, and it is a lot of fail, one must be mindful that Republican’s did nominate Romney and that he was responsible for establishing a universal coverage health care plan in Massachusetts. This whole Romneycare thing is going to come up. Strategically it would seem to make more sense to bring it up occasionally on your own terms rather than on President Obama’s terms. Given that the media are generally Obama’s lapdogs don’t think this won’t come up again.
You go to election with the candidate you have. It’s not like we didn’t know that this was going to come up. For Team Romney its better that it occurs now when people are watching the Olympics not politics.
All that said, I wouldn’t be sad at all if Saul moved to a new post in the campaign.