Showing posts with label judd gregg. Show all posts
Showing posts with label judd gregg. Show all posts

Sunday, January 06, 2008

Team Gregg's Falling Out With Mitt Romney


The political landscape in New Hampshire looked so much different back at the end of October.

Mitt Romney was up, everyone else was down and few people believed that John McCain, the big winner in 2000, was still a viable candidate in the 2008 first-in-the-nation Primary.

And into this favorable political environment Team Romney rolled out Judd Gregg, New Hampshire's senior U.S. Senator and Romney's "slam dunk" endorsement.

In other words, the Mitt train is leaving the NH station. All aboard!

But then a funny thing happened. John McCain came roaring back in the polls. And with two days to go before the Primary, McCain and Romney are essentially tied.

To combat McCain's surge in New Hampshire, Team Romney has spent the last several weeks blanketing the airwaves with hard hitting attack ads. Romney has pounded McCain on immigration and on McCain's position on the Bush tax cuts.

Romney's latest attack ad, which uses "real" NH voters (read: Romney supporters) to make the case against McCain, trashes McCain for being too old and too part of Washington to be President.

The ads are not working.

According to the latest UNH poll, John McCain's favorable-to-unfavorable-rating in New Hampshire is 81% - 13%.

In other words, NH voters still have an overwhelmingly positive view of John McCain (no surprise to us).

According to the same poll, Romney's favorable-to-unfavorable-rating is 39% - 53%.

In other words, NH voters don't think much of the former Massachusetts Governor (again, no surprise to us).

And while we "somewhat" buy the CW wisdom that New Hampshire voters don't reward candidates who spend lots of money on negative ads, we "certainly" buy the wisdom that New Hampshire voters don't reward candidates who attack their opponent from a 63-point net favorablity disadvantage.

Which is why Mitt Romney's scorched earth strategy to stop John McCain in New Hampshire is failing (and we think soon to be "has failed").

But Team Gregg already knows all this. Nobody knows New Hampshire and its voters better than Judd Gregg.

That's why Team Gregg has a big problem with Team Romney.

We've heard from 3 different sources (one source in DC and two on the ground in NH) that as Mitt Romney goes more and more negative against McCain in New Hampshire, Team Gregg gets more and more upset.

It's not because Team Gregg has a soft spot for the Arizona Senator. Far from it.

The political operatives around Judd Gregg only care about one thing - the re-election of Judd Gregg (if he wants it).

And as we understand it, the reason for Team Gregg's heartburn is that they are terrified that New Hampshire voters will lump Senator Gregg in with "flailing, angry, negative Romney".

Flailing, angry, negative Romney who is trying to tear down a war hero that New Hampshire "loves".

The NH newspapers all endorsing McCain over Romney was embarrassing. Having Gregg scolded by the Union Leader editorial page wasn't the greatest. But the scorched earth campaign that Romney is running has the very real potential of seriously complicating Gregg's next re-elect.

And as we understand it, Team Gregg has had it with Mitt Romney.

Welcome to the party Senator Gregg.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Today's Cartoon In The Sunday Union Leader


Subtle.

As a sledgehammer.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Senator Gregg's Top Staffer's Mother Endorses Mitt Romney, Senator Follows Suit


The UL is reporting that Senator Gregg will endorse Mitt Romney today.

Shocking!

We reported on the likelihood of Gregg's Romney announcement back in August.

And, to be fair, everyone who's anyone in NH political circuits (and many who aren't) have been expecting this endorsement announcement for months.

It's probably a good political pick-up for Mitt.

And Senator Gregg has a dynamite (no snark) bill on entitlement reform cooking in the Senate, which buys him some serious love from us.

But, to be fair (we like being fair), George W. Bush probably thought that getting Senator Gregg's endorsement in 2000 was a big deal.

Turned out, not so much.

Friday, October 12, 2007

"Nothing Like A Little Good News For Y'all To Print Up!"


So the White House pool report quoted President Bush after a WH economic team availability trumpeting a shrinking budget deficit.

Which is like the captain of the Titanic saying, "But anyway, we got a really bitching orchestra rocking downstairs!"

Because the only economic game that matters is meaningful entitlement reform.

Senator Gregg knows the score.

So does David Walker.

Lil Bush, maybe not so much.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Well Done Senator Gregg!


A Congressman finally does something that we can get excited about.

No snark.

The Union Leader has a huge above the fold article on Gregg/Conrad sponsored legislation that would create a bipartisan task force to meaningfully address government entitlement spending.

Noted: Hat tip to Jordy Yagrer, an intern with the Boston University Washington News Service who wrote the article.

The "teeth" of the Gregg/Conrad legislation - The bipartisan task force (made up of 7 House Members and 7 Senators and chaired by the Secretary of the Treasury) submits "long term policy recommendations" to the Congress in December of 2008, which would then have just 5 legislative days to accept or reject the entitlement reform proposals without change.

We look forward to watching the Congress kick and scream its way through that vote.

The best part of the Gregg/Conrad bill? The legislation has the support of GAO head (and our hero) David Walker.

Which means that it has the support of us.

And we'll be watching its progress very closely.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Is Judd Gregg About To Endorse Mitt Romney?


Hot, bothered and idle August speculation to be sure.

But with more than a touch of "informed guessing".

Senator Gregg, a Republican, said recently that he would be making a Primary endorsement "soon". Like September or October.

Which has started (again) New Hampshire's tongues a wagging about Gregg's choice.

But we think that Gregg's choice is easy to guess - Mitt Romney.

Because Senator Gregg's right hand man is Joel Maiola.

And Joel's mother, Betty, is a co-chair for Romney's Womans Leadership Team.

Romney and Gregg are almost family. Which counts for a whole lot.

But what about the other candidates?

We think that it is unlikely that Gregg endorses McCain after McCain embarrassed Gregg's last endorsement, George Bush, in the 2000 NH Primary.

For a player like Gregg, that only leaves Thompson and Giuliani.

And no real player endorses Fred Thompson.

So that leaves Giuliani. Who hasn't worked New Hampshire as hard as Mitt Romney.

And who doesn't have "family" connections to Senator Gregg like Romney does.

Gregg endorses Romney.

We're buying that conventional wisdom.

Noted: But do Romney 2.0 and Gregg split their differences on immigration reform?

Time, as always, will tell.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

NH Senator Judd Gregg For VP?


Our good friend Cosmo at New Hampshire Presidential Watch always gets it first and generally gets it right.

Which makes him a first thing in the morning, last thing at night must-read for Granite State clackers (and their hangers on).

Cosmo pulled a article from yesterday's Roll Call newspaper titled Senators Eye #2 Spot.

Ah Congress!

As our health care system collapses it seems our Senators have nothing better to do than shuck, jive and BS their way onto a VP short list.

F.U.B.A.R.

According to the article, NH Senator Judd Gregg is one of the Senators eyeing the #2 slot.

Which leads us to snort in a self-important way, "Heavens to Betsy, why?"

As we see it, the only upside for Senator Gregg running as the '08 Vice-Presidential nominee is that certain members of his staff could (and would) upgrade their Tomcat ways.

Don't get us wrong, being able to ask the working girls in the bar at DC's Prime Rib Restaurant,"Do you want to explore my cosmos in the Observatory?" is probably going to net you a discount.

But is that enough to try to convince your boss to leave his lofty perch in the Senate for a job where his primary responsibility would be hanging around waiting for #1 to get hit by a bus?

Sadly, in this case it probably is.

But before Hiz Honor and Big Love really start talking a Gregg NH Primary endorsement in exchange for the VP spot we would urge them to give The Cowboy Governor (now President) a call and ask him how Senator Gregg's endorsement of George W in the 2000 NH Primary worked out.

We're just saying.