web analytics
November 26, 2014 / 4 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Herzliya Campus A Day on Campus

To mark IDC Herzliya’s 20th anniversary, we spent a day following Prof. Uriel Reichman, IDC’s founder and president, and Jonathan Davis, VP for External Relations, around its delightful campus.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

The Campaign That Wasn’t


A recent Atlanta Journal-Constitution political cartoon depicted Rudy Giuliani attempting to explain his campaign strategy: “The strategy is, lose every primary and become the Republican nominee.” To which his listeners replied: “So far so good.”

How the mighty have fallen! Throughout 2007, Rudy was the consistent leader in the polls, at times demonstrating leads of 20 percentage points and more over his closest competitor. As late as a month and a half ago, before the primaries began, a University of Georgia analysis of pre-primary polls showed Rudy amassing as many convention delegates as all his opponents combined. But that was before he embarked on a strategy that was unorthodox, to say the least.

In the early primaries, Rudy’s effort ranged from a half-hearted one in New Hampshire to merely maintaining a presence on the ballot, as in Nevada and South Carolina, where he got just two percent of the vote. Rudy’s campaign strategists made it clear they would go all out in the January 29 Florida primary (the first where the winner gets all the delegates), and that was supposed to give him vitally needed momentum going into “Super Tuesday” on Feb. 5, when Republican primaries were held in 21 states.

The strategy, decided on some time ago, was apparently based on the notion that former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney would be Rudy’s only major competitor. Though Romney had governed Massachusetts as a moderate (he even introduced a statewide universal healthcare system), he changed his views on a number of issues, particularly abortion, and set out to position himself to the right of Rudy.

Rudy, on the other hand, wanted and needed to run on his record as New York’s mayor. Knowing he could not possibly compete with Romney’s personal wealth in terms of purchasing advertising, Rudy decided to conserve his money for Florida, where he felt had had an excellent chance of beating Romney.

What Rudy did not count on was the emergence of Sen. John McCain, who won in New Hampshire and South Carolina, and also Mike Huckabee.

Last July, while Rudy was way out in front, McCain’s campaign seemed all but dead. McCain fired his campaign manager, his chief strategist, and some 50 other campaign staffers. Contributions were just not coming in. Though he reorganized his staff, fundraising did not improve much.

Still, McCain was determined to press on, which he did. For one thing, the one-state-at-a-time early primaries really didn’t require huge expenditures of cash so much as holding rallies and getting interviews on the local news and radio talk shows. In other words, the main thing was to simply maintain a strong presence.

The emergence of Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor and an ordained Baptist minister, was also a surprise as he was little known outside his home state and was originally expected to have about as much impact on the primaries as Congressmen Tom Tancredo and Duncan Hunter. But he proved to be an effective communicator in the debates and, though he had even less money than McCain, demonstrated a strong presence in Iowa with its first-in-the nation caucus and went on to win there. The fact that the majority of Iowa Republican voters are evangelical Christians obviously didn’t hurt.

The fifth and final major contender for the Republicans was former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson. With solid conservative credentials, Thompson was expected to have an impact as he tried to position himself as the heir apparent to Ronald Reagan’s legacy. But Thompson had wavered for quite a while before finally deciding to throw his hat in the ring in early September, and his campaign did not catch fire. He did finally connect with many voters in South Carolina, but his third place finish there was not enough and he dropped out. That was seen as benefiting Romney and Huckabee, but did nothing for Rudy, who was overwhelmed by McCain’s early victories and the media attention that came with them.

Why Rudy ignored the first six primary or caucus states (Iowa, Wyoming New Hampshire, Michigan, Nevada and South Carolina) – an unprecedented strategy by a committed candidate – will no doubt be analyzed for months, perhaps even years, to come.

In the past, candidates have avoided a few states where they felt they couldn’t compete with their one major opponent. Since the opponent would then win more or less “unopposed,” the media might not make much of that victory.

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “The Campaign That Wasn’t”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Posted to Twitter in Ferguson, MO by St. Louis County Police: "Bricks thrown at police, 2 police cars burned, gun seized by police. Tonight was disappointing."  Their motto is, "To protect and serve."
Pro-ISIS Group Says ‘Use Ferguson Flames to Fuel Terror in America’
Latest Indepth Stories
Red Line Obama

“What’s a line between friends?”

West_Bank_&_Gaza_Map_2007_(Settlements)

Unrest in YESHA and J’m helps Abbas and Abdullah defuse anger, gain politically and appear moderates

Thousands of rabbis pose in front of Chabad-Lubavitch headquarters in Brooklyn on Sunday during the annual International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries.

A “Shliach” means to do acts with complete devotion and dedication in order to help bring Moshiach.

Arabs create opening for terrorists to walk the security wall between Ramallah and Jerusalem and Ramallah.

The pogroms in Chevron took place eighty five years ago, in 1929; the Holocaust began seventy-five years ago in 1939; the joint attack of Israel’s neighbors against the Jewish State of Israel happened sixty-six years ago… yet, world history of anti-Semitism did not stop there, but continues until today. Yes, the primitive reality of Jews […]

“We don’t just care for the children; we make sure they have the best quality of life.”

“Why do people get complacent with the things they’re told?”

Arab opposition to a Jewish State of any size was made known by word and deed in the form of terror

Operation Moses: First time in history that non-blacks came to Africa to free blacks from oppression

As Arabs murder and maim Jews, Jordan’s leaders bark the blood libel of “Israeli aggression.”

Perhaps attacking a terrorist’s legacy broadly and publicly would dissuade others from terrorism?

R’ Aryeh yelled “Run, I’ll fight!” Using a chair against terrorists to buy time so others could flee

Riot started when Muslim students wore the Pal. kaffiyeh and Druze students demanded them removed

The “Media” didn’t want us to know what a kind, giving, loving young woman Dalia was.

A “Palestine” could become another Lebanon, with many different factions battling for control.

Maimonides himself walked and prayed in the permissible areas when he visited Eretz Yisrael in 1165

Having a strong community presence at the polls shows our elected officials we care about the issues

More Articles from Harry Eisenberg

A recent Atlanta Journal-Constitution political cartoon depicted Rudy Giuliani attempting to explain his campaign strategy: “The strategy is, lose every primary and become the Republican nominee.” To which his listeners replied: “So far so good.”

Due to term limits, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg stands to be out of office come January 1, 2010, a thought he may not relish. Hence, while he continues to deny it, his aides keep sending out trial balloons alluding to an independent run at the presidency.

In the aftermath of the Six-Day War, Israelis were convinced that peace with the Arabs was finally at hand. That thinking was based on the notion that the war had proven Israel’s invincible presence in the region. If Israel was unbeatable, they reasoned, what choice would the Arabs have other than to make peace?

It comes across as a classic Right-Left dispute. Liberals, led by Al Gore, claim global warming is due mainly to human activity and something must be done before it is too late. Conservatives question that and are quick to accuse the Left of scare tactics fueled by a desire to expand the powers of government. Yet if we put our emotions aside, reasonable discourse can take place and rational conclusions can be drawn.

Nowadays many people claim our situation In Iraq is becoming more and more like it was in Vietnam. One major criticism of our effort in Vietnam was the absence of an exit strategy. In war planning the term “exit strategy” doesn’t necessarily mean cut and run, as some mistakenly believe. Rather, it is simply defining how you plan to bring the war to an end. In Vietnam, it was beyond the capabilities of both the Johnson and Nixon administrations to devise such a strategy.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/the-campaign-that-wasnt/2008/02/06/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: