Yesterday (although I did my best) you couldn’t miss the Todd Akin story, high low and in between. It dominated twitter, it was highly played on talk radio it was everywhere as people speculated what Rep Akin would do.
While Claire McCaskill is celebrating (I think slightly prematurely) I think there were several traps that the Akin case creates and both left and right may be primed to fall into them.
For the right: We have already seen a couple of these trap evident, and they have actually fallen for some of them.
1. Speak softly and carry a big stick…:
If you want this guy out of the race you don’t plan so many cards publicly, you play them privately. The worst thing you can do is scream and shout out loud and fail.
1a…Particularly if you’re the boss:
Mitt Romney’s statements in the morning was a good idea they were strong but not a demand. It was the right public tone. I’m not so sure about second statement near the deadline. Like a president who doesn’t go to a conference until the deal is already made I think urging Akin to leave at the last minute when you didn’t know he was going looked weak.
Perhaps they considered this a “Sister Souljah” moment for him if so they might have fallen into trap #2.
2. You can’t appease the MSM:
Both Dana Loesch & I talked about being uncomfortable with reversing a primary over a gaffe but as a whole the GOP has condemned Todd Akin’s remarks and asked him to leave, from Mitt Romney and Scott Brown Reince Priebus and the entire Missouri delegation urged him to go. Commentators from Ann Coulter to Charles Krauthammer asked him to leave. Sean Hannity practically begged him to go…
… yet today on Morning Joe and the MSM it’s as if none of this happened. As far as they are concerned the GOP is labeled by Todd Akin. All GOP members are stuck to him like Brer rabbit to the tar baby and the media is saying that everywhere.
Now one would not be surprised by the Democrat party pouncing on this. That’s their job and it beats talking Obama’s record, but the MSM’s decision to grab this and hold on like a dog to a bone should make it clear to the GOP a point they should already know. No matter what you say, no matter what you do, it will never be enough for the MSM or the left. Trying to appease the MSM is a fool’s errand and attempt to do so are useless and counter productive.
3. Don’t Panic in large friendly letters:
Of all the things I saw yesterday the thing that annoyed me most was the sheer unadulterated panic by some on the right over this whole business.
All of the weaknesses that existed for the Democrats three days ago still exist, all the weaknesses for Claire McCaskill still exist. All of the advantages that we hold we still hold and if you look at voters like Cheryl you will see this race spells disaster all over for the left.
The left has two huge problems their record and their morale. Nothing at all can be done about the record but panic on the right can only embolden the left’s volunteers and more importantly their money people.
Campaigns are long things and day to day and week to week you are going to have these things happen (Remember when etch-a-sketch was going to sink Mitt Romney?).
If the GOP faithful let themselves get played over this they only have themselves to blame.
The GOP can’t undo Trap #1. Mistake #1 has already been made, Mistake #2 is a continuing problems for the right but mistake #3 can be avoided and the GOP faithful would be well advised to take it.
As for the left well that’s my next post…