Does fighting between the candidates hurt the GOP’s chances?

With all of the bickering between GOP candidates it seems like a whole lot of dirty laundry is being brought into the spotlight. Between Gingrich’s adultery and Romney’s apparent preferences toward the rich, Obama is being handed all the fodder he needs to launch his campaign later this year. With Romney ahead, people are speculating that Gingrich may be harming the GOP campaign by continuing to fight so hard. After Gingrich’s loss in Florida Gingrich didn’t congratulate his opponent, nor did he make the traditional congratulatory phone call to Romney after it was apparent that he would win. Instead he vowed to continue his campaign all the way to the Republican convention, even though the Republican establishment fears this could produce a fractured party going into the general election.

It looks like the race for the GOP nomination is down to two front-runners, Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney. It has turned into somewhat of a grudge match between the two. Newt and Mitt don’t particularly like each other. The Massachusetts moderate and the conservative leader have been slinging mud at each other since the beginning of the campaign. While the Republican Party is attacking each other, President Obama is being helped by good economic news that he can use to argue that his policies are finally taking hold. The unemployment rate has been steadily declining and key indicators say that the nation’s economic fortunes may indeed be turning.

Obama’s campaign strategists can barely contain their joy over the fractured Republican Party. With the GOP’s significant fracture it is going to be very difficult to see them get alone later on in the campaign. With as angry as the American public is about bipartisan garbage not allowing for any compromise in congress, I don’t see how they will want to elect a party that can’t even get along amongst themselves let alone the opposing party.

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  • kessledi  On February 3, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    I think the question here is how far Gingrich and Romney go. It’s a balancing act, as if they go too far, they risk splintering their party significantly come the general election and giving Obama too much fodder; if they go too nice, it weakens the candidates by not preparing them for the mudslinging that the general election will have. Obama and Hilary were a good symptom of a good balance, however it remains to be seen if Gingrich and Romney can also strike that balance.

  • hartwe60  On February 5, 2012 at 11:08 am

    I really think that they haven’t struck a balance and I believe that PACs have unbalanced the system. PAC put out their own content and can’t be controlled by the candidates. If you look at the best mudslinging it is content made by PACs. The example I can think of his Gingrich’s PAC documentary on Romney at Bain Capital.

  • shinnsm  On February 5, 2012 at 5:30 pm

    I think that with every state that Gingrich and Romney fight for, all those negative ads hurt both candidates. If the ads were positive then they would be helping their case in the general election, but the favorability of both men is falling. The good news is that it does prepare the eventual nominee for the onslaught he’ll face in the general election, but he’ll have to fight to get that favorability rating back up. Since Romney is the likely nominee, that will be easier said than done: he’s not a great communicator and he has a problem connecting with people.

  • jmerhit  On February 6, 2012 at 12:11 pm

    The negative ad’s won’t necessarily hurt them. They could end up making them stronger and more prepared for the general election. I mean if Obama trys to use something from the ads in the primary. It won’t be anything new to them. They would have already experienced it and know how to deal with it. I would be more worrided about Obama coming up with something new that hasn’t been talked about and that the cainidates weren’t prepared

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