Politico's most prolific scribe Mike Allen recently teamed up with veteran journalist Evan Thomas to produce the first of four eBooks that will be published on the 2012 race, with the first released today. The first installment is called "The Right Fights Back" and focuses mostly on the GOP primary contenders, providing a great overview of the race so far, but more importantly to us political junkies, plenty of quotidian details to give the reader an engaging behind-the-scenes look at the Presidential campaigns.
You can purchase the book for only $2.99 here.
Here are three little scooplets that we found particularly intriguing:
1. Obama has no message:
What the Obama campaign did not have was a message. In 2008, Obama had won on a promise to change Washington. When that quickly proved impossible, he tried to work with the powers-that-be in Washington to get things done. With the exception of the first stimulus bill and the highly controversial health care legislation, that didn't really work, either.
The lack of a message was a source of considerable anxiety inside the Obama camp. "There's a bit of casting about, throwing ideas at the wall," said an Obama adviser. "Win the Future followed by We Can't Wait followed by — who knows what comes next?"
…The new "message," says the adviser, is "to align more closely to the 99 percent" against the "1 percent" — the mantra of Occupy Wall Street.
…It may be that Obama will have to win the hard way — by superior political mechanics, by finding new voters and turning out old ones. For now, Obama has no slogan; the bumper sticker just says "Obama 2012."
2. Don't mess with Ed Rollins, Michele Bachmann's former campaign manager who is notorious for trashing his former candidates:
Bachmann wanted to spend $300,000 to compete in the September 24 Florida straw poll, a waste of time and money as far as Rollins was concerned. When another Bachmann aide insisted to Rollins that the candidate should go for the straw poll, saying that former Florida governor Jeb Bush had told Bachmann she could win the state, Rollins threatened to play the sort of hardball at which political consultants delight. According to Rollins, he told the aide, "I'll tell you, the quickest way to stop that is I'll go leak that story to POLITICO. I'll go tell Maggie [Habberman, a POLITICO reporter] that Governor Bush basically said that you [meaning Bachmann] could win Florida, and you'll see how long it takes him to drop that rumor real quick."
3. American Crossroads is a force to be reckon with:
By the summer of 2010, [Karl] Rove was secretly flying around the country for a new organization called American Crossroads, harvesting checks from wealthy donors. An organizer ticked off the bounty: "A $4 million check, a $3.5 million check, a bunch of million-dollar checks, a $7 million check that came in the form of a $5 million check and two $1 million checks and one $10 million contribution that came in tranches of $2.5 million. I think $69 million of our money came in contributions of $100,000 or more" When one Californian asked Rove what his cut was and was told it was zero, the wealthy patron doubled his gift.