The EFM Feature

The “dean” of the Washington press corps had some good things to say about Gov. Romney’s organization and strategy.

The former Massachusetts governor has approached the challenge of his dark-horse candidacy with the mind-set of a corporate turnaround specialist — the work he did for years at Bain Capital. Thinking as a venture capitalist, he set specific goals and a timetable — and so far, he is on track.
The main measures of that progress have been Romney’s victory in the August straw vote in Ames, Iowa, and the polling leads he has established in the early voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire. The charts in his headquarters also measure the growth of organizational resources in Michigan, Nevada, South Carolina and Florida — the other target states for Romney.

And a little more:

No Republican in the modern era of contested nominations has won both of these early states, and the plausible belief in the Romney camp is that his doing so would have the effect of vaulting him into the lead nationally. As of now, those contests will be followed by Michigan, where Romney spent his boyhood and the Romney name is familiar, thanks to his father’s service as governor. Then come South Carolina, where Romney’s challenge is simply to exceed low expectations, and Florida, which in the Romney calculus could be decisive in setting the table for the Feb. 5 super-primary.
Many events could upset this scenario. But the methodical, business-like Romney campaign has had a clear strategy — and, unlike Thompson, a stable, professional management team. For them, January — not February — is the decisive month.

Broder isn’t the first DC pundit to recognize the superior leadership and organizational skills of Gov. Romney, and he certainly won’t be the last. I think the challenge for the campaign is to draw a link for voters between Gov. Romney’s leadership of his campaign and his would-be leadership of the government. This is a hard argument to make to folks who don’t follow politics 24/7 and don’t really care about/understand long-term political strategy, but it’s a good one to make nonetheless.

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