Saturday, March 17, 2007

Romney News Round Up

Kyle already threw up the LKL videos, but here are a few other nuggets from the press worth looking over:

Swift Boat Money Man Raising $ For Romney (Washington Post) - Chris Cillizza of the Washington Post is reporting that one of primary financiers of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth 527 (he donated $4.5 million to the group) has signed on to raise money for Mitt Romney. Cillizza points out why he thinks this is meaningful:

First, it likely means a significant financial windfall for Romney's campaign.... Second, the Romney team is likely to paint Perry's decision as a slap in the face to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.).... Third is the symbolism of Romney linking himself to Perry. No single person is more closely identified with the Swift Boat Veterans and their controversial campaign to discredit John Kerry than Perry.

Romney's Stratified Fundraising System (Washington Post): The same article above also notes that "Romney has created a stratified bundling system based on the "Rangers" and "Pioneers" model employed by Bush in 2000 and 2004. To be a "Founder," an individual must raise $250,000 for the campaign; a "Statesman" is charged with collecting $100,000, and a "Patriot" $50,000."

Book Says Romney Is Able To Overcome (Deseret News): The Deseret News takes a look at conservative pundit and blogger Hugh Hewitt and his book A Mormon in the White House? 10 Things Every American Should Know about Mitt Romney. Hewitt boils down concerns about an LDS president to three general issues:

First, some worry that an LDS president would be controlled by church leaders in Salt Lake City. "That is the easiest of the objections to dismiss," Hewitt said.... The second objection may be the toughest for Romney, Hewitt said. It comes from some evangelical conservatives who worry that a Mormon president "would greater legitimize Mormon missionary work abroad and lead to more converts".... The third objection is that Mormonism is "just too weird," and anyone who believes in such "fantasy" should not be elected.
Romney's Words Grow Hard On Immigration (Boston Globe): The Globe reports, with audio included, on how Romney's rhetoric on immigration and the McCain-Kennedy immigration bill has changed markedly over the past two years. The audio clips are from 2005 (he made similar comments to the Lowell Sun last March).

In a November 2005 interview with the Globe, Romney described immigration proposals by McCain and others as "quite different" from amnesty, because they required illegal immigrants to register with the government, work for years, pay taxes, not take public benefits, and pay a fine before applying for citizenship.

"That's very different than amnesty, where you literally say, 'OK, everybody here gets to stay,' " Romney said in the interview. "It's saying you could work your way into becoming a legal resident of the country by working here without taking benefits and then applying and then paying a fine."

Mitt Romney Scrambles To Raise Cash For White House Campaign (AP): The AP reports on Romney's fundraising push this month:

The former Massachusetts governor had scheduled 20 fundraising events this month, all in advance of an end-of-the-month deadline that will give the first true look at the fundraising prowess of all the 2008 presidential contenders. Reports detailing how much money was raised by March 31, as well as how it was spent, will become public by April 15. The first total is especially important for Romney, who has been trying to elevate his name recognition nationally after placing a distant third behind former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani and Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., in several national polls gauging the GOP candidates. "What he's trying to do is establish himself as a leading candidate by being able to compete financially with Giuliani and McCain," said Anthony Corrado, a government professor at Colby College who specializes in presidential campaign finance. "If he were to beat one of those guys, that would be a news story."

These fundraising efforts include stops in places that range from unorthodox, like Boise and Southern Utah, to standard fare like Orange County.

Mitt Romney's Son On Dad's 2008 White House Run (Fox News): Tagg Romney was on the Big Story Thursday night talking about his dad's presidential run.

LDS Faith Makes Him Better, Romney Says (Deseret News): The Deseret News reported on Romney's Larry King Live experience, noting in particular his comments on the role of his LDS faith in his campaign and life:
"I have a better marriage because of my faith. My children are better because of my faith. I'm a better person because of my faith," he said. "I think the American public would like to have a person of faith lead the country."
Campaign Additions (Press Releases): Nothing groundbreaking, but a few campaign additions to note:
  • In California this week, Romney announced the co-chairs of his California Finance Committee.
  • In Iowa, Romney announced the chairs of his campaign in Iowa County and also named former Senate Majority Leader Stewart Iverson as an adviser to his presidential campaign efforts in Iowa.

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