To: Interested Parties
From: The Clinton Campaign
Date: April 22, 2008
MEMO: Watch What They Do, Not What They Say
The Obama campaign is attempting to pre-spin the results from tonight's Pennsylvania primary by suggesting that Sen. Clinton should - and will – win.
But after the Obama campaign’s “go-for-broke” Pennsylvania strategy, after their avalanche of negative ads, negative mailers and negative attacks against Sen. Clinton, after their record-breaking spending in the state, a fundamental question must be asked: Why shouldn't Sen. Obama win?
Sen. Obama's supporters - and many pundits - have argued that the delegate "math" makes him the prohibitive frontrunner. They have argued that Sen. Clinton's chances are slim to none. So if he's already the frontrunner, if he's had six weeks of unlimited resources to get his message out, shouldn't he be the one expected to win tonight? If not, why not?
As the phrase goes, watch what they do not what they say.
There's a reason Sen. Obama and his campaign have ratcheted up their year-long assault on Sen. Clinton's character and ended the Pennsylvania campaign with a flurry of harsh negative attacks. It's because they know that a loss in Pennsylvania will raise troubling questions about his candidacy and his ability to take on John McCain in the general election. And it's because they know that the race is neck and neck and tonight's contest is a measure of where the campaign stands.
The reality is this: both candidates need a combination of pledged and super delegates to secure the nomination - and either candidate can reach the required number. The press and the pundits have repeatedly counted Sen. Clinton out and she has repeatedly proved them wrong. The vote in the bellwether state of Pennsylvania is another head to head measure of the two candidates and of the coalition they will put together to compete and win in November.
No amount of spin from the Obama campaign will change that - nor will it explain away anything less than a victory by Sen. Obama.
Date: April 21, 2008
To: Interested Parties
From: Mark Nevins, Pennsylvania Communications Director
Re: Countdown to PA Primary
Today, the Clinton campaign in Pennsylvania unveiled a new television ad that delivers Senator Hillary Clinton’s closing argument in the Keystone State.
In contrast to the negative attacks from the Obama campaign, Hillary enters Primary Day with a positive TV spot that details how tough the job of President is, and asks voters who they think is ready to step in and handle it. Senator Obama is doing everything he can to win Pennsylvania outright, outspending the Clinton campaign by a three to one margin in the state, and sharply attacking Senator Clinton on the stump and in television, radio, and direct mail pieces.
You can view the ad here
Meanwhile, Senator Obama is spending an estimated $11.2 million to the Clinton campaign’s $4.8 million in Pennsylvania. The $7 million gap in funding between the two campaigns could fund an entire campaign in another state. The Obama campaign is pouring unprecedented amounts of that money into their negative TV, radio and direct mail efforts, as well as paid phone calls.
If Senator Obama is unable to do well here, it will raise questions about his ability to win the large, swing states that he needs to win to take the election in November.
Senator Obama’s negative tactics in Pennsylvania are part of a growing pattern seen in other states: when his back is against the wall, he tends to go on the attack. Senator Obama would rather throw punches than give thoughtful responses to key concerns from voters. He is going to have to do a much better job at addressing these issues if he wants to convince voters and superdelegates of his ability to win in a general election against John McCain.
Senator Clinton is continuing to criss-cross Pennsylvania, talking to voters about the issues that are important to them, like the economy, health care and the Iraq war. After 35 years of making change, Hillary has the experience to lead the country on day one in the White House.
The job of a President is tough. Hillary has what it takes to handle it.