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Latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll reveals

The latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll reveals less than encouraging news if you are a Republican.  The problems for the GOP are not new and aren’t easily fixed.

The poll points out that the GOP has an image problem that is evident to the most casual observer.   When you lose a race for the White House the party gets painted with the same brush as the nominee.  We are now labeled as the party of the rich, and there is no short term solution for this.  The long term answer lies partly in who we pick as our next nominee. They will be the face of the party and he/she must articulate a positive, optimistic conservative vision that attracts voters to the GOP. When that occurs the goodwill generated from the nominee will spill over to the party.

The second problem with the Party according to the poll is that the country is in a different place than the GOP on issues.  Correct again.  Speaker Boehner and his new leadership team have an opportunity to hit the reset button. And they will. But frankly we need someone who can promote a conservative agenda in positive terms that voters can identify with.

Finally, the poll states that the GOP has a gender gap with women and, yes, it’s true, too.  The converse is also true:  the Democrats have a gender gap with men.  But the majority of voters in this country are female, which makes the GOP’s problem worse.  This is a messaging problem that won’t go away without some pushback from our elected officials. We need to drive a wedge between the democrats and female voters.  The issues are there, but we need to steal a page from their play book and balkanize female voters on issues they care about; the VA scandal and senior health care would be a good place to start.

Jim Innocenzi

Message Matters for 2012 GOP Presidential Candidates

Lost to most voters in last week’s events in the fact that the 2012 GOP presidential race has begun in earnest.  The front runner based on the two events in New Hampshire and South Carolina is: wait for it…..Herman Cain.

That’s right.
While most national polls show former governors Mitt Romney, Mike Huckabee and TV Celebrity Donald Trump leading the pack, Herman Cain is the one guy who is wowing the grassroots in New Hampshire and South Carolina.

I attended last week’s American’s for Prosperity “Conservative Man of the Year” dinner in Manchester where our client, Ovide Lamontagne, was feted and 5 major presidential candidates spoke.  Ask any of the over 100 members of the media there, including international reporters from the BBC and Japan, and they’ll tell you Herman Cain’s message connected with the grass roots activists in the room.

In Thursday evening’s debate in South Carolina, members of Frank Luntz’ focus group ate up Cain’s folksy answers and simple direct messages.  His outsider, non-politician’s way of addressing American’s problems is a welcome relief to the political double speak we’re hearing out of Washington these days.   It also explains how “The Donald” shot up like a comet for two weeks before crashing back down to earth.

America is tired of the BS.  Herman Cain gets it, although he needs to bone up on foreign policy.  Voters want their leaders to talk to them like adults, and deliver some results.   Until someone else in the GOP field gets that message Mr. Cain will remain in the mix.

To view an example of what I mean, check out Ovide Lamontagne’s commercial on our portfolio page.  It’s direct and to the point.  And, Ovide is a great messenger.

Rock on.