Recently on CNN, Newt Gingrich appeared with Piers Morgan to discuss what Mitt Romney needs to do in order to ensure his campaign’s success.
The advice was pretty simple: Do to Barack Obama what you did to me.
As someone who was in the Newt camp since before he had even declared his intent to run for President, this advice seems like something Romney should seriously consider.
During the primaries, Romney did not run a “nice guy” campaign strategy, it was brutal. And as a supporter of the candidate who was on the receiving end of this strategy most of the time, it was noticeably effective.
“When he walks in to debate Obama, he’s got to be as tough with Obama as he was with me in Florida,” Gingrich said in an interview on CNN’s “Piers Morgan Tonight.”
After all, Gingrich said, Romney “is not in a competition to be likeable.”
At two debates in Florida last January amidst their bitter struggle for the GOP presidential nomination, Romney lit into Gingrich.
The two entered the Florida primary locked up in the polls. But after some heavy stumping – and arguably some debate thumping – Romney emerged on top in the vote count, beating Gingrich by 14 points and claiming the state’s delegate haul.
With Romney trailing Obama in favorability, Gingrich encouraged Romney to play aggressively on the debate stage. The most recent CNN/ORC International Poll of likely voters, conducted earlier this month after the conclusion of both conventions, showed Obama with a 9 point advantage over Romney in their respective favorability ratings.
“He’s in a competition to be capable,” Gingrich said. “We need somebody who can turn America around. We need him to convince us that a Romney recovery is better than an Obama stagnation. Unless he can do that, I don’t care how much effort they spend trying to make him likeable – it won’t work.
Newt is right. Romney must show America that he is a vastly more capable President than Barack Obama.
He’ll get his first chance to do just that on October 3, when the two will debate in Denver about Domestic policy issues. If Romney can turn in a couple of performances like his final Florida primary debate, November 6th will be a good day for America.