President Barack Obama decisively won reelection to a second
term, garnering the popular vote as well as 332 electoral votes to
the challenger's 206, but the course of presidential campaigning
never did run smooth. Despite a slowly rising stock market and
falling unemployment rate, the economic recession provided the
Romney campaign with rich opportunities for criticism of Obama's
first term. Obama's team countered negative advertising with its
own program to discredit Romney's platform, building on the
microtargeting techniques from 2008. A surge in social media
promotion and fact-checking changed the tenor of campaign reportage
for better and for worse.
On December 6, 2012, prominent members of President Obama's
election staff (including David Axelrod, Joel Benenson, Stephanie
Cutter, Anita Dunn, and Jim Margolis) met with notable members of
the Romney campaign (including Eric Fehrnstrom, Kevin Madden, Beth
Myers, Neil Newhouse, and Stuart Stevens) for a debriefing of this
tumultuous election cycle. Each team made a formal presentation
about how it prepared for and responded to the events of the
election, describing the members' strategies and perceptions at
different points of the campaign and interrogating the opposing
party's team about its tactics. In this book, Kathleen Hall
Jamieson provides an overview and an edited transcript of the
all-day event, along with a timeline of election year milestones. A
DVD featuring select video of the proceedings is included.
Electing the President, 2012 offers a detailed look into
the internal machinery of a presidential campaign and insight into
the principles that drive outcomes in a democratic election.
Subjects: Political Science
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