March 17, 2004

Campaign Tactics

"In the Oval Office on Tuesday, Mr. Bush showed a flash of how confrontational he planned to be on Mr. Kerry's foreign affairs record. With the Dutch prime minister, Jan Peter Balkenende, at his side, Mr. Bush demanded that Mr. Kerry provide evidence to support his suggestion last week that foreign leaders want to see Mr. Bush defeated.

"If you're going to make an accusation in the course of a presidential campaign, you've got to back it up with facts," Mr. Bush told reporters on Tuesday."

From the NYT.

I don't like this.

Bush is cheapening the incumbent Presidential coin.

Coming out swinging like this, still pretty early, and during a press conference with a foreign PM, strikes me as too fast, too hard, too undignified.

I mean, what next?

Bush turning to the Dutch PM and ask him if Kerry's contentions were true, ie. does Mr. Balkenende want Kerry to replace Bush along with all those other anonymous "foreign leaders"?

Does Karl Rove get this?

He needs to keep Dubya above the fray in these types of forums--statesmanlike and all that.

I get the feeling the White House has internal numbers that are getting them worried.

And Bush is reacting somewhat emotively to them, perhaps.

Bush should slow down. And get his jabs into Kerry at the right time.

More often than not, he should let his T.V. ads and surrogates do the talking.

And, yeah, he should remember that November is still a ways away.

Posted by Gregory at March 17, 2004 03:47 PM
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