Boy oh Boy, when rats desert the ship they get really cranky. Today the White House did its best to make sure Martha Coakley (or Marsha if you believe the Kennedys) gets 100% of the blame for the fact that her election to the Senate is in Trouble. Coakley’s people are blaming it on the White House, Obama’s Policy, and the national Democratic Party committees:
The White House would have helped out Martha Coakley’s campaign earlier if she had only asked, White House senior adviser David Axelrod said today. President Obama made a last minute campaign stop for Coakley on Sunday, but many Democrats wondered why he didn’t make an earlier, stronger push.
“The White House did everything we were asked to do,” Axelrod told reporters today, according go the Baltimore Sun. “I think if we had been asked earlier, we would have responded earlier.”
“And in private conversations, Hill sources say White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel has blamed Coakley, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and Democratic pollster Celinda Lake for failing to see Brown’s surge in time to stop it.”
On the other hand one of Coakley’s advisers, angry over the White House comments gave Coakley’s side(anonymously) to Politico
The adviser, who cited internal polling numbers to make the case, emails that, “There’s more to the story than that. If Martha is guilty of taking the race for granted, so is the White House, and the DNC.”
The adviser pointed to internal polling to argue that Coakley held a wide — 20 point — lead on December 19, and that the damage she took between that survey and a January 5 Rasmussen poll putting the race at 9 points came from the national scene: The Senate vote on Health Care, with the controversy over Ben Nelson’s deal for Nebraska, and the Christmas Day bombing.
The Coakley adviser’s memo:
National Dems Failed to Aid Coakley Until Too Late
- Coakley campaign provided national Democrats with all poll results since early December
- Coakley campaign noted concerns about “apathy” and failure of national Democrats to contribute early in December. Coakley campaign noted fundraising concerns throughout December and requested national Democratic help.
- DNC and other Dem organizations did not engage until the week before the election, much too late to aid Coakley operation
- Brown Capitalized on Concerns About National Democrats
- From the beginning, Brown labeled President Obama’s health care and cap and trade plans as tax increases. Polling throughout the race showed this to be the most effective attack on Coakley.
- Coakley’s lead dropped significantly after the Senate passed health care reform shortly before Christmas and after the Christmas Eve “bombing” incident. Polling showed significant concerns with the actions of Senator Nelson to hold out for a better deal. Senator Nelson’s actions specifically hurt Coakley who was forced to backtrack on her opposition to the abortion restriction amendment.
- Democrats concerns with Obama’s Afghanastain plan forced Coakley to oppose the Afghan war in the primary, which hurt her in the general.
- Claims about Coakley’s Scant Campaigning and Miscues Were exaggerated
- Because of the failure of national Democrats to support Coakley, she was forced to devote significant time to fundraising in December. She also released a variety of plans in December and had a public event nearly every day.
- Coakley’s failure to release television advertisments until 12 days before the election was the result of a fundraising problem that national Democrats failed to resolve. Meanwhile, right wing groups pumped significant amounts of money into Brown’s campaign allowing him to go up with ads first, including negative attack ads funded by the Swift Boat and Willie Horton groups.