“The most important thing is to define Mitt Romney early before he has a chance to define himself,” said Steve Elmendorf, a Washington lobbyist who served as deputy campaign manager during the John Kerry presidential campaign. “The goal is to make him unacceptable to independent voters…
An Obama campaign aide said on Tuesday that the president’s team has been highlighting Romney’s extreme conservative positions for a year and that it wasn’t a shift in strategy.
But as recently as last fall, the Obama campaign seemed focused on crafting an image of Romney as a flip-flopper who changes his positions as he sees fit. In October, Obama strategist David Axelrod told CBS’s “The Early Show,” “I think there is a sense that there’s no core to him.”
Now Obama aides and those close to the campaign say the Romney of the GOP primaries is the real Romney.
“No one forced Mitt Romney to wrap his arms around the Tea Party and take the most extreme position on immigration of any candidate in modern history, but that is the platform he has decided to embrace throughout the campaign,” said Jen Psaki, a former Obama aide.