I know many of you would like to focus on the fact that Karl Rove was granted a job by Newsweek magazine. After all the crimes, misdemeanors, and foul play committed, I do not blame you. But I could not help but notice these pointers for Republicans seem a lot like what Barack Obama is using to beat Hillary Clinton right now. Perhaps, months ago Rove spoke with Barack on how to beat Hillary.
Plan now to introduce yourself again right after winning the nomination. Don't assume everyone knows you. Many will still not know what you've done in real life. Create a narrative that explains your life and commitments. Every presidential election is about change and the future, not the past. So show them who you are in a way that gives the American people hope, optimism and insight. That's the best antidote to the low approval rates of the Republican president. Those numbers will not help the GOP candidate, just as the even lower approval ratings of the Congress will not help the Democratic standard-bearer.
Having heard Barack Obama share with us his "audacity of hope" time and time again, Obama supporters know from experience just how right that bold section of Rove's piece is. The best way to sway the voters is to woo Americans into believing he or she can bring about a new beginning in Washington.
Say in authentic terms what you believe. The GOP nominee must highlight his core convictions to help people understand who he is and to set up a natural contrast with Clinton, both on style and substance. Don't be afraid to say something controversial. The American people want their president to be authentic. And against a Democrat who calculates almost everything, including her accent and laugh, being seen as someone who says what he believes in a direct way will help.
Interestingly enough, Barack Obama has set up a natural contrast.
Go after people who aren't traditional Republicans. Aggressively campaign for the votes of America's minorities. Go to their communities, listen and learn, demonstrate your engagement and emphasize how your message can provide hope and access to the American Dream for all. The GOP candidate must ask for the vote in every part of the electorate. He needs to do better among minorities, and be seen as trying.
Hmm...maybe I was wrong. Maybe more than months ago Karl Rove spoke with Barack on how to beat Hillary because his best-selling book is titled, "The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream."
Be strong on Iraq. Democrats have bet on failure. That's looking to be an increasingly bad wager, given the remarkable progress seen recently in Iraq. If the question is who will get out quicker, the answer is Hillary. The Republican candidate wants to recast the question to: who will lead America to victory in a vital battleground in the War on Terror? There will be contentious fights over funding the troops and over intelligence-gathering right after the parties settle on their candidates. Both battles will help the Republican candidate demonstrate who will be stronger in winning the new struggle of the 21st century.
Barack has actually chose to break with Democrats or more specifically, the Democratic base here and support plans to leave troops so that "victory" can be achieved. He actually believed the surge is working but was upset at the lack of political progress. This is a FOX News talking point really and not far off from the advice Rove gives here.
The American people would like to think that the war was not a waste and something good could come out of all the taxes they paid to finance it. They would like to think all the soldiers who died weren't killed for nothing. And so, being able to keep the "War on Terror" alive like Barack Obama plans to do is key and ultimately will be key to the Republican nominee that runs.
The conventional wisdom now is that Hillary Clinton will be the next president. In reality, she's eminently beatable. Her contentious history evokes unpleasant memories. She lacks her husband's political gifts and rejects much of the centrism he championed. The health-care fiasco showed her style and ideology. All of which helps explain why, for a front runner in an open race for the presidency, she has the highest negatives in history.
While the prospective Republican nominee is talking about her now, the time will come soon when he must spend more time telling his story. By explaining to voters why he deserves to be our next president, he will also make clear why that job should not go to another person named Clinton.