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Shays Meows McMahon’s Loss–Murphy Would Have Defeated Him Too–McMahon, Obsitnik Poor City Performance

November 8th, 2012 · 8 Comments · Analysis and Comment, City Politics

Shays, Bush

Shays and Bushy united in Iraq.

Former Congressman Chris Shays is reminding anyone willing to listen to him that he was right about Linda McMahon’s inability to win a general election. Maybe he should blame himself instead of blowing his trumpet, for managing his own primary that led to his August drubbing by McMahon. Shays couldn’t even win Bridgeport, where he lives, in the primary. Shays ran a terrible race. This is what happens when the candidate manages the race.

Shays had plenty of primary money to run a competitive race against McMahon. The campaign was top heavy in paid staff, weak in messaging, poorly managed by the candidate himself. He trotted out Dick Morris and Karl Rove as his surrogates, the same Dick Morris and Karl Rove who guaranteed Mitt Romney’s Tuesday landslide win. How’s that going?

Shays conveniently forgets that had he been the GOP candidate the Chris Murphy forces would have buried him in his dubious voting record, war-hawk frothing, love for George W., limitless sticking foot in mouth. Shays would not have defeated Murphy either.

Republicans continue to perform poorly in Bridgeport because they fail to craft Bridgeport-specific messaging. McMahon invested in Bridgeport, but it was in bodies and presence and not messaging. Nothing about Bridgeport-specific jobs. Nothing on Steel Point. Nothing on crime. Nothing on job training. Nothing on elder care. Nothing on streamlining the Medicaid process. She received just 17 percent of the vote in Bridgeport, a few points ahead of Mitt Romney.

It was the same thing with Jim Himes’ GOP opponent Steve Obsitnik. Do you know how many news releases or statements OIB received from the Obsitnik campaign about Bridgeport? Zero. Nothing.

Oh, the Obsitnik operatives said, we’ll have a real Bridgeport campaign. It was flat. You’re not going to reach 20,000 unaffiliated city voters or beleaguered Dems with canned campaign crap. It won’t resonate. As a result the GOP candidates didn’t resonate.

Former State Senator Rob Russo ran ahead of other GOP candidates in the city in his legislative races because he had Bridgeport-specific messaging.

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8 Comments so far ↓

  • Willy Chute

    But would he have brought down the rest of the ticket like she did? Would Rorabach have won?

  • AndersonScooper

    Time out. Shays still lives in Bridgeport? Are you guys sure of that? (My guess is he’s back to D.C. already, and his home in St. Michael’s Maryland.)

  • the old quarterhorse

    Yes, Chris Shays still lives in Black Rock. If you’d like to hear him bad mouth Linda McMahon live and in person, stop by the Harborview Market in Black Rock and say hi.
    And Lennie is right, Shays ran an absolutely terrible campaign. I guess that’s what happens when your long-time campaign manager is in jail for embezzling candidate funds.

    • adamjschmidt

      He’s got a condo in Bridgeport, right? Still has the house in St. Michael’s I believe–beautiful town, would love to retire there one day myself.

  • donj

    Lennie, we are still waiting for the Black Rock precinct numbers you know??? Who won there was it Obama or Romney; Murphy or Linda; numbers please. :)

  • donj

    Obsitnik 12% wtf, he got blown out by Himes. I said this once and will say it again, all the Linda signs in the city were on public property, light posts, etc. Anybody can plaster the city with signs. She ran horribly in Bridgeport Tues I was even shocked by how bad she did in Bridgeport just 17%, wow.

  • Grin Ripper

    Shays is Assive-Aggressive!

  • Gabriel

    Wait a second, wasn’t Rob Russo a campaign operative for Shays this time around? Maybe his role was limited to bashing John Slater rather than offering great tactical advice on Bridgeport strategy.

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