Clinton Campaign Shakeup

Clinton Campaign Shakeup

 

Bill Clinton has been muzzled (most likely self-muzzled as no one in Hillary’s campaign, including Hillary can muzzle Bill)

 

Patti Solis Doyle is out (citing family concerns, but where were those concerns in Iowa?)

 

Maggie Williams is in (she was really in charge following Iowa, but it took this long to ease Doyle out)

 

Mark Penn says it’s a “New Day” after Super Tuesday (how will he put a positive spin on Super Saturday??)

 

Hillary’s cash (she claims it was from her portion of a joint account, but not Bill’s) is in

 Political Night Train believes the Potomac Primary on Tuesday will be the point of no return for Hillary.  If Obama takes 60 +% of DC, Maryland and Virginia, the Democratic primary may be all but over, Superdelegates not withstanding. 

Patti Solis Doyle & Mark Penn Out; Maggie Williams & Roy Spense In???

As the  Clinton team bunkered themselves in hotel rooms in NH, Hillary, Chelsea and Huma Abedin covered the campaign scene.  Huma was at Hillary side 24/7 to provide for every need.Many of the campaign seniors, such as Ann Lewis  have gone directly to Hillary  to complain about the campaign is being organized and run and to beg for changes.  This is very unusual as everyone on Hillary’s staff is terrified of pissing off her royal highness.  Even Huma isn’t spared the venom and sharp tongue.A few staffers, speaking off the record have indicated a shakeup is coming, with the decisions to be made Wednesday and Thursday evening and announced over the weekend, when there is less press coverage.  Don’t expect any staff to get the boot, just another layer of campaign management to fix what is broken.  Bill has wanted to fire most of the senior staff enmasse, but he too won’t piss off Hillary.Terry McAuliffe, the campaign chairman, said publicly and repeatedly on Tuesday that new additions would be made to the staff. “We’ll bring in more people to help us,” McAuliffe said buoyantly on MSNBC mid-afternoon.  Clinton is expected to return to her home in Chappaqua to make the decisions.On Fox News, Ann Lewis stated Hillary’s campaign would be adding staff at “all levels”, meaning the senior most levels, those that have direct access to Hillary.  Bill Clinton has admitted to the same.  The problem, how to announce the changes without them sounding like a shake up.  PNT anticipates a weekend announcement of “additions” to the campaign staff that have been planned for months.  Look for a co-this and a co-that.  The problem for Hillary is that her senior staff is full of friends of Hillary and they will be tough to boot out.  However, another loss, like in South Carolina and she will have to make permanent changes.  As the new staff, all friends of Bill come in, they will want to replace the downstream staff as well.  Look out for the ripple effect.  Look for Maggie Williams to take over co-campaign manager duties with Patti Solis Doyle (will report on cat fight later).  Doyle is unlikely to get the boot as she has been loyal to Hillary since the early 90’s.  However, do look for Williams to give the press more and freer access to Hillary.  Look for Doyle to be sent out to various states as an advance person, with little or nothing to do.  FOB Roy Spence is being added to senior staff, probably to independently second guess Mark Penn.  He’s already been interpreting polls for Bill. 

Clinton Campaign Shakeup? Mark Penn Out, James Carville In????

Political Night Train has learned that James Carville may be joining Hillary Clinton’s campaign in an effort to move her back to “front runner” status.  Carville hinted of a Clinton campaign shake up, coming at about the time of the Iowa caucus.  There have been recent rumors that Mark Penn may be on the way out as he has not been able to maintain Hillary in the lead on a state-to-state basis.

Developing . ……

Mark Penn Fired From Hillary Clinton Campaign?????

Hot Rumor!  Political Night Train has picked up on a story that Mark Penn has been fired, or has quit the Hillary Clinton campaign over his continuing remarks about Senator Obama’s cocaine use.

Developing . . . . .

Inside The Hillary Clinton Campaing: Fear, Loathing, Backbiting, & Bill

Here are some Political Night Train insights as to what is going on inside the Hillary Clinton Campaign 

CHRIS MATTHEWS had this to say about the Hillary Campaign: What he (Bill Clinton) ought to do is get Paul Begala to come back and work in the campaign. She’s got a lot of hard-hitters around her but no one with any heart. The appeal of the Clintons over the years and the reason why the Democratic Party is in love with the Clintons is that the Clintons, with all their flaws and perhaps arrogance, care about the regular person in this country, the regular middle-working class family with all their problems of health care and raising their kids. Hillary Clinton, especially, cares about those things. It’s obvious she does. It’s not a fraud. They’ve gotta go back to why they’re running. What it now looks like and based upon your questions, and by the way they’re the questions everyone’s asking, how she gonna hit Obama next? They’ve gotta change the question from, “How are the Clintons gonna whack Obama?” to “Why do the Clintons continue in their public life?” And they’ve got to answer that question. If I were Bill, I’d go around with Hillary, introduce her both in the same room, big town halls, answering all kinds of questions about people’s real life needs. That’s the way Bill Clinton won in New Hampshire back in 1992. They’ve gotta get out there and talk about people’s needs and stop talking about Obama. They gotta stop acting like it’s the last minute in an NBA game and they gotta foul the other guy to get the ball back. They gotta end this sense of desperation. It’s either Mark Penn, Mandy Grunwald, somebody in that campaign keeps teaching them fear. Fear is killing the Clinton campaign.What is Team Hillary Thinking?Something that doesn’t quite make sense regarding the last back-and-forth between Hillary and Obama, regarding William Shaheen, co-chairman of Mrs. Clinton’s national and New Hampshire campaigns, raising Barack Obama’s past drug use. (Riehl says this is a sign Hillary’s toast.) The team around Hillary Clinton is supposed to be among the best, the sharpest, the smartest in Democratic politics. Or so we’re told.As Jonah notes, there was, indeed, a time when the Clintons could have a surrogate go out and make an attack on a Clinton rival, and then have her or her husband say, “no, no, I don’t stand by that, I don’t believe in the politics of personal destruction, I disavow it,” etc. Back then, the candidate seemed high-minded and above the fray, but the negative attack still got into the media’s bloodstream. But it’s a different era, everybody in the press knows how that game is played, and so when somebody comes out and says, “oh, she had nothing to do with this, her campaign had nothing to do with this issue being raised,” nobody believes her.The thing is, Mark Penn, Patti Solis Doyle, Howard Wolfson, James Carville — these people have to know nobody’s going to believe that she had nothing to do with this. The Clintons don’t get the benefit of the doubt when it comes to this stuff.But I wonder if the Clintons themselves think that they still do. And we know who has the final say in those internal discussions. If Hillary’s convinced that the public will believe her denials, who around her can convince her otherwise?http://campaignspot.nationalreview.com/post/?q=MmQ5M2MzNjg2MDQ3YTc3M2Q4NWJlYmI3ZWVjZGJjZWE=  CONCORD, N.H. (AP) – A top campaign adviser to Hillary Rodham Clinton resigned Thursday, a day after suggesting Democrats should be wary of nominating Barack Obama because his teenage drug use could make it hard for him to win the presidency. Clinton herself apologized to Obama as they waited to fly to Iowa for a debate. Bill Shaheen, a national co-chairman for Clinton and a prominent New Hampshire political figure, had raised the issue during a Wednesday interview, published on washingtonpost.com. “I made a mistake and in light of what happened, I have made the personal decision that I will step down as the co-chair of the Hillary for President campaign,” Shaheen said in a statement released by the campaign Thursday. “This election is too important, and we must all get back to electing the best qualified candidate who has the record of making change happen in this country. That candidate is Hillary Clinton.” Shaheen, an attorney and veteran organizer, had said much of Obama’s background is unknown and could be a problem in November 2008 if he is the Democratic nominee. He said Republicans would work hard to discover new aspects of Obama’s admittedly spotty youth. “It’ll be, ‘When was the last time? Did you ever give drugs to anyone? Did you sell them to anyone?'” said Shaheen, whose wife, Jeanne, is a former New Hampshire governor and is running for the U.S. Senate next year.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D8TGQQKO0&show_article=1

 DES MOINES – On the eve of the final Iowa debate before the Jan. 3 caucuses, Clinton campaign insiders are increasingly questioning the cautious, poll-driven approach taken by Mark Penn, Hillary Rodham Clinton’s top political aide, sources familiar with the situation say.

With Clinton barely holding her own against Barack Obama and John Edwards in Iowa, dissatisfaction is growing with Penn, who some say has mistakenly run Clinton as a de facto incumbent.

“There are two people who have come up with this strategy – one Hillary Clinton and one Mark Penn,” said a top Clinton ally, speaking on condition of anonymity. “Mark wanted to run her, basically, for re-election, and we are seeing what happened.”

Bill Clinton To the Rescue? Will Bubba Cure or Kill Hillary’s Campaign?

There was more evidence today that the Hillary Clinton campaign is in serious trouble.  Hillary has a reputation for being a control-freak and her campaign is no exception.  Her strategy to run as if for re-election, as if she is the anointed one, to run a national campaign rather than a state-by-state campaign has failed.  The problem is, and Bill Clinton had a similiar problem, is that none of the top campaign officials will speak out and tell Hillary she was, and is wrong, not even Bill.  Top staff are all pushing and shoving for any favors they can get out of Hillary, from face-time, to good campaign jobs for their friends and relatives.  Even Bill Clinton will not directly confront Hillary.  He tries to use back channels within her campaign staff to effect changes, but to no effect.  If things don’t turn around soon, and Political Night Train predicts they won’t, Hillary will have no choice but to shake up her staff, bring in some of Bill’s friends.  Now ask you this, “If Hillary cannot keep her campaign staff in order, how will she run her administration staff, especially since it would be staffed with the same people as are now on the campaign staff.  What you see now is a good indication of how she will run her administration.  And, if Bill Clinton must come to the rescue, save Hillary’s campaign, what will he do when Hillary is President and gets into trouble? 

WASHINGTON – Bubba to the rescue!Alarmed by his wife’s slide in the polls and disarray within her backbiting campaign, a beside-himself Bill Clinton has leaped atop the barricades and is furiously plotting a cure – or coup.“She’s in big trouble and he knows it,” a top Democratic operative and Hillary Clinton booster told the Daily News.Sources familiar with the ex-President’s thinking say he doesn’t believe his wife’s situation is desperate. But he’s unhappy with her operation – once hailed as a juggernaut – and concerned she could lose the Democratic nomination without major alterations in strategy and staffing.Bill Clinton is mulling “a lot of different ideas and a lot of different scenarios to fix this,” an official who regularly speaks with him said. “He will come up with literally dozens of ideas. The trick will be to figure out the most important one or two to get her out of this downtrend.”Another Democrat with close connections to the Clinton campaign describes Bill Clinton as “very engaged and very agitated. He’s yelling at [chief strategist] Mark Penn a lot.”Penn laughed off the idea that he’s on the hot seat. “That’s funny,” he said. “I’ve been working with Bill Clinton through thick and thin for 10 years, exchanging views.”A source close to the former First Couple criticized recent campaign ads as lacking focus, faulting Penn the most for failing to fine-tune the message: “The key problem is not the spots, but what they’re saying.”Sources close to the former President say he and the candidate are talking constantly but sharing very little of what they’re discussing with subordinates.Several other Hillary Clinton partisans, however, aren’t so shy about critiquing the performance of her campaign – and predict a major staff purge is inevitable. Campaign officials and a source close to both Clintons flatly denied the head-rolling buzz. “Can this change by the end of the week? Yes,” the source said. “But at this point, everyone’s on solid footing.”Another Hillary Clinton operative told The News, “Nothing will happen until after Iowa,” referring to the Jan. 3 Hawkeye State caucuses. The candidate last night rejected the scuttlebutt.“These stories are false. I have the best staff in the country, and I have total and complete confidence in them,” she said.Campaign manager Patti Solis Doyle is the biggest target, sources said. She recently took over personal command of the Iowa operation, and a Clinton defeat there could damage her future.As Barack Obama has steadily narrowed Hillary Clinton’s once-impregnable lead, friction inside her headquarters has flared. One post-Thanksgiving meeting erupted into finger-pointing over the loss of her advantage.“They all want to kill each other,” said a source aware of the closed-door meeting.The backstabbing involves several high-level people in the campaign, including Penn, Mandy Grunwald, Ann Lewis and Howard Wolfson, sources said.Penn maintained, “It’s a totally false story.” Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton’s campaign abruptly shifted gears Tuesday, arguing Obama can’t beat a Republican. Until now, her attacks targeted Obama’s experience, not his electability.Pouncing on a report that revealed Obama staked out stridently liberal positions in a 1996 candidate questionnaire, Hillary Clinton’s campaign argued his past record is easy ammunition for the GOP.Obama spokesman Bill Burton fired back, “For a candidate who 50% of the country says they won’t consider voting for, raising questions about electability is a curious strategy.”

It will be very tough to boot Ann Lewis off the team.  Patti Solis Doyle has been part of the Hillary team for a long time, but with what is shaping up as a 3rd place finish in Iowa, she is likely to get dropped, and soon.  If support in Iowa keeps going south, look for her to go, and soon.  A 3rd place finish in Iowa will likely result in a Friday night purge.  Gone will be Mark Penn and his cronies.  There’s some bad blood between Bill Clinton and Penn and other top Hillary staffers.  The trouble with the staff is 1) too many hormones at work, creating a bickering, back-biting, cat-fighting working environment.  Hillary stays aloof and out of contact with the personnel issues, she’s too busy plotting and micro-managing campaign strategy and interpeting polling results.  Hillary’s problem has always been that she believes she is smarter than anyone else in  the room, including Bill Clinton.  If Bill Clinton rides in and saves the campaign, how will it look?  If Hillary can’t even run a decent campaign, how can she run the country?

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/2007/12/12/2007-12-12_bill_clinton_to_aid_hillarys_campaign.html

Zogby Poll Unfavorable To Hillary? Zogby Responds To Mark Penn

Mark Penn: Buckling Under the Pressure of an Unfavorable Poll

All is fair in love and war, the centuries–old proverb states. Politics is not included, but given the way the game is played in modern–day America, maybe it should be. That’s the sense I had again this morning watching Mark Penn, the chief political strategist for Democrat Hillary Clinton, denigrate our latest Zogby Interactive survey simply because it showed his client in a bad light (Link to Latest Poll Number). Penn made the contention on the MSNBC morning news program hosted by Joe Scarborough (Link to Video)

Penn mischaracterized this latest online Zogby poll as our first interactive survey ever – a bizarre contention, since we have been developing and perfecting our Internet polling methodology for nearly a decade (Zogby Intreractive Methodology), and since Penn’s company has been quietly requesting the results of such polls from Zogby for years. We always comply as part of our pledge to give public Zogby polling results to any and every candidate and campaign that asks for them. What is interesting is that no other campaign has made as many requests for Zogby polling data over the years than Penn has made on behalf of Clinton.

Because Mark Penn is a quality pollster himself, we chalk up his contention that our poll is “meaningless” as a knee–jerk reaction by a campaign under pressure coming down the stretch. Several other polls – Zogby surveys and others – have shown her national lead and her leads in early–voting states like Iowa and New Hampshire have shrunk. This is not unusual. These presidential contests usually tighten as the primaries and caucuses approach.

Fritz Wenzel
Director of Communications
Zogby International