New article from TNR today that has Clinton campaign insiders revealing how it all went so horribly wrong, and some of the details squaring with what we’ve talked about here frequently.
Among the most notable screwups…
- Mark Penn had no business being a Chief Strategist
On the top tier team…
“Hillary assembled a team thin on presidential campaign experience that confused discipline with insularity; they didn’t know what they didn’t know and were too arrogant to ask at a time early enough in the process when it could have made a difference, effectively shutting out even some long-time Hillaryland loyalists. Her innermost circle of [Patti Solis] Doyle, [Mark] Penn, [Mandy] Grunwald, [Neera] Tanden and [Howard] Wolfson formed a Board of Directors with no single Chairman or CEO; nobody was truly in charge, nobody held truly accountable.”
Yeah, sounds like a President Hillary would have put together a cracker jack cabinet too.
On the lack of a national strategy…
“There was not any plan in place from beginning to end on how to win the nomination. It was, ‘Win Iowa.’ There was not the experience level, and, frankly, the management ability, to create a whole plan to get to the magical delegate number. That to me is the number one thing. It’s starting from that point that every subsequent decision resulted. The decision to spend x amount in Iowa versus be prepared for February 5 and beyond. Or how much money to spend in South Carolina–where it was highly unlikely we were going to win–versus the decision not to fund certain other states. … It was not as simple as, ‘Oh, that’s a caucus state, we’re not going to play there.’ That suggests a more serious thought process. It suggests a meeting where we went through all that.”
And we were supposed to trust this woman with our health care? Our foreign policy? Hrmmm….
On Harold Ickes being ignored…
“Harold Ickes’s encyclopedic understanding of the proportional delegate system was never operationalized into a field plan. The campaign inexplicably wrote off many states entirely, allowing Obama to create the lead of 100+ delegates that he has today. Most notably, we claimed the race would be over by February 5, but didn’t devote any resources to the smaller states that day and in the weeks that followed, allowing Obama to easily run up margins and delegate counts on the cheap–the delegate margin he will win by.”
You can almost hear the echoes…”Naw, we can ignore Ickes. I mean, he does know EVERYTHING about the primary system, but this thing will be a cake walk against somebody named Barack. Name’s too ethnic, it’ll never play in those small states.”
So yes, while it remains to be seen whether or not Obama will win in the fall, it does looks like Democrats really dodged a bullet by going with him. Because a Hillary White House sounds like it would have been a complete mess.
And seriously, please do read the whole thing. The mistakes they made are so obviously amateur hour it’s painful.