February 6, 2008

Clinton pollster Mark Penn Spins Himself Silly

You would think Mark Penn would come up with something better than claiming Senator Barack Obama is the ‘establishment candidate’.
This one is worth keeping an eye on, because we'll be hearing more of it in the days ahead. In the Clinton campaign conference call I mentioned below, Hillary pollster Mark Penn repeatedly said Obama was becoming an "establishment candidate" -- a rather strained effort to use Obama's high-profile endorsements to weaken his insurgent appeal.

Asked about Obama's loss in Massachusetts despite the Teddy Kennedy endorsement, Penn again reiterated the fact that voters making up their minds on the last day had broken for Hillary, suggesting (without quite saying) that this was somehow catalyzed by Obama's new high-profile support.

"The more that Senator Obama has shifted to becoming an establishment campaign based on endorsements, people said, `You know, it's really Senator Clinton who has the ideas for change,'" Penn told reporters.

Again: Keep in mind that in advance of yesterday's contest, Hillary had a massive lead in Massachusetts for weeks. Anyway, we'll be hearing more of this.
On a related note, Mark Penn consulting firm has been paid more than 4.3 millions by the Clinton Campaign.
Even if his candidate fails to secure the Democratic nomination, Mark Penn, the chief strategist for Sen. Hillary Clinton, has profited quite handsomely.

Through the course of the primary, Penn's consulting firm, Penn, Schoen & Berland Associates, has been paid more than $4.3 million by the Clinton campaign, according to a review of campaign finance filings.

That total, compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, includes receipts for tasks ranging from polling and consulting to mail expenses and even photography. It does not include the $1.5 million the Clinton campaign is in debt to the firm.


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