Sunday, December 2, 2012

GOP Inside baseball

The political junkies on both sides will enjoy this post. Erick Erickson at Redstate declared war on the "consultant class" after election day.  He penned a series of posts naming names and diagramming the relationships.  Erick ramped it up in his latest missile, oops, I meant missive, against the consultants he says are strangling the Republican Party.  Mr. Erickson writes:

"If money is the root of all evil, for the Republican Party evil is located on the fifth floor of 66 Canal Center Plaza, Alexandria, VA 22314.

Strip away the candidate and coalition and it is on the fifth floor of 66 Canal Center Plaza where the seeds of Mitt Romney’s ruin and the RNC’s get out the vote (GOTV) effort collapsed — bled to death by charlatan consultants making millions off the party, its donors, and the grassroots....

This is like putting the fox in charge of the hen house. The fifth floor of 66 Canal Center Plaza reveals a tangled web of incestuous relationships among Republican consultants who have made millions all while the GOP went down the tubes. Here the top party consultants waged war with conservative activists and here they waged war with the Democrats. On both fronts, they raked in millions along the way with a more fractured, minority party in their wake. And they show no signs of recognizing just how much a part of the problem they are.

According to a Lexis business search, the fifth floor of 66 Canal Center Plaza houses the following groups:

Crossroads Media
Black Rock Group
WWP Strategies
Restore Our Future
Targeted Victory
DDC Advocacy/Blue Front Strategies
Target Point Consulting
Digital Franking
Americans for Job Security

Click on picture to expand.
To understand the problems, we need to go back in time. Michael Beach is a co-founder of Targeted Victory, LLC, as is Zac Moffatt. Before that, he was the National Victory Director for the Republican Party during the 2008 campaign...

FLS Connect seems to control the RNC and controlled Team Romney to a degree.

FLS Connect was the phone vendor for Bush 2000, Bush-Cheney 2000, Bush-Cheney 2004, and McCain-Palin 2008. In 2008, the NRCC also sent a hefty chunk of money to FLS Connect.

During the Bush era, the Republican National Committee developed Voter Vault, a database used to identify and mobilize voters to the polls. At some point a parter at FLS Connect, Rich Beeson, went to work at the RNC as Political Director. Also, the RNC sold its Voter Vault data to FLS Connect and then leased that data back from FLS Connect. By the end of 2008 activists and others were complaining that the voter vault data was no longer very good.

Likewise, according to friends at the RNC at the time, Rich Beeson gave the RNC’s phone vendor contract to FLS Connect without bidding to others. The rate was not out of line, but it was a multi-million dollar contract to Rich Beeson’s former firm, FLS Connect.

Fast forward to 2012.

Rich Beeson moved from the RNC to the Romney Campaign as its Political Director. Jeff Larson moved from FLS Connect to the RNC.

FLS Connect continued to get business from the RNC and also got business from Team Romney. But now Targeted Victory enters the picture.

Targeted Victory, LLC’s principal office is the same office in St. Paul, MN that FLS Connect, LLC lists as its own principle office. Targeted Victory’s manager is Tony Feather, who is the F in FLS Connect.

Rich Beeson, who used to work for FLS Connect, is now with Team Romney and Team Romney awards a contract to Targeted Victory, LLC for its digital work with Zac Moffatt as Digital Director of the campaign.

Targeted Victory, LLC and FLS Connect, LLC rake in millions in commissions. The central component to Rich Beeson’s get out the vote operation is Project ORCA, which is headed by Zac Moffatt of Targeted Victory, LLC, whose principal office in Minnesota is shared by FLS Connect, LLC. As of October 26, 2012, Targeted Victory had been paid $64 million by Team Romney and FLS Connect had been paid $16.5 million
...." Rest of post


KaptKangaroo said...

I've maintained all along they had a "garbage in" problem with their data. It is the only plausible reason for lack of voters to show up. It would take 2-3 years to clean it up today. But then why do that when you are leasing an aged list that hasn't been updated since Bush?

Anonymous said...

Same thing goes on here in Mississippi with the GOP. Barbour boys get a cut out of any and all things Republican Party and republican campaign related here. They could care less about winning, they know some GOP'er down here will win in the end anyway, in a non-competitive state for general elections, they just go for the money. Austin made big money off of the Mississippi Republican primary back last March doing robo-calls and mail for Romney, when in fact he was NOT the favorite candidate of the Republican primary voter in these parts. They just take the money and run all the while laughing at the stupidity of the average MS Republican voter!!!

-Deputy to Senior Strategist (Stewart Stevens) Austin Barbour

note Austin Barbour, not Henry Barbour (as correctly reported by The New York Times on April 19, 2012) A national finance chairman for Romney. Partner at Clearwater Group, LLC from March 2011. Managed appointed U.S. Sen. Roger Wicker's successful 2008 campaign. Ran Haley's PAC from its start in Sept. 2004. Lobbyist at Capitol Resources in Jackson. Graduate of University of Mississippi, 1999. Nephew of former Gov. Haley Barbour.-

Anonymous said...

This is like blaming your clubs on your crappy golf game.

Anonymous said...

Austin did not make a dime off the Mississippi Romney primary. What, if anything, do you base that claim on? For the record, he also did not run Haley's PAC. If you are going to criticize someone, at least get your facts straight. Austin got into the arena and fought for who he thought would be the best president out of the people who were running for the nomination. He worked for months for that effort as a volunteer and represented Mississippi well. Good for him. Even though his candidate lost, we should want more Mississippians like Austin getting into the fight.

KaptKangaroo said...

BS garbage in garbage out.

Kingfish said...

He has not been at CRG for some time. Good fund-raiser. So good at it he'll make you think you are warm after he's stripped you naked in a freezer.

Anonymous said...

If you are going to criticize someone, at least get your facts straight.

Donna Ladd is a Donkey.

Anonymous said...

2:11, ya know, working outside today had me swattin skeeters and flies all day, now I see you want to join-in for a swattin yourself. OK friend, I love reading about Austin NOT MAKING A DIME off the MS Romney primary back last March, poor guy just volunteered heading-up Romney's statewide "ground game", probably was bored and had nothing but time on his hands, and certainly a Presidential campaign would allow a volunteer to "head up" a campaign ground game in a state primary election, I see from news reports. Please contact me so that i can sell you Hwy. 49 for real cheap man, real cheap...

-WASHINGTON -- Mississippi Republican consultant Austin Barbour will join Mitt Romney's campaign in Boston and will serve as deputy to top Romney adviser Stuart Stevens, The Huffington Post has learned from sources with knowledge of the move.

Barbour has been a national finance chairman for Romney, and helped staff get out the vote efforts in numerous primary states. He also headed up the ground game for Romney in Mississippi, where the former Massachusetts governor came closest to winning a state in the deep South.

Barbour, 36, is a nephew to former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour (R), who himself explored a run for president before deciding against it last year. Stevens, who is a native of Mississippi, has a longstanding relationship with the Barbour family.

Austin Barbour was finance chairman for his uncle's gubernatorial campaign in 2003, and then ran Sen. Roger Wicker's (R-Miss.) successful campaign in 2008, in which he defeated former Gov. Ronnie Musgrove (D). Barbour was finance director for the Mississippi Republican Party in 2011 when it won control of the state House for the first time since 1870.

Barbour will move to Boston, allowing Stevens to continue traveling with Romney on the campaign trail while also ensuring that Stevens can remain more plugged in to the decision-making process at Romney headquarters.-

Jim Perry said...

To the person who made the 6:04pm and 11:31am posts: I am confident that I know more about this subject than you -- even though I don't know what your name is -- and the record should be corrected.

I joined the Romney campaign as a paid staff member in August to assist with the debate preparations. Before August, I was a volunteer and was proud to work on the campaign with Austin, whom I consider a good friend. I tell you these things in the hope that it might lend credibility to what I am writing now:

Austin was a volunteer for the Romney campaign until he joined the campaign full time AFTER the Mississippi primary. He didn't make any money off of the campaign before he moved to Boston and joined the full-time staff and he certainly did not make money off of the Mississippi primary. I am confident that it actually cost him money when he traveled to New Hampshire, Florida and Michigan to volunteer his time in the primaries.

This type of dedicated volunteer is much more common in presidential and other campaigns than you may think. There are people who volunteer lots of time and assume leadership roles in elections because they believe in the candidate and the cause and thank goodness they do. In fact, many of the statewide leaders of the Romney campaign during the primaries were volunteers. Your cynicism about this process is unfortunate especially since it is causing you to unfairly attack someone.

In this case, you are attacking someone who dedicated many, many hours of his time (months of which was as a volunteer) because he believed in Governor Romney and wanted to defeat President Obama. Unfortunately, we came up short.

Regardless of the outcome, it would be much classier of you to applaud Austin's effort and dedication to the cause than casting aspersions on his character.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Jim Perry, whatever eases your conscience sir, apparently your defense of Austin Barbour, is fine with me. Glad he is your close friend. I myself have worked in paid positions in Presidential campaigns, Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, etc., and spent 20 years working in DC on and off after serving in strategy and advisory positions in top state campaigns,in large states, fortunately not in Mississippi.

Anything associated with the name Barbour in Mississippi is certainly not something I would be proud of, including any close associations with the former governor's family. Good luck to you sir.

Anonymous said...

Volunteer = someone who doesn't have to go to work for a living. Whether it's because they get corporate welfare, "economic development" money or plain ol' food stamps and a free cell phone, they're all the same. They take more from the government than they give, and they are sucking the life out of this country and its middle class. I hope they all get hit by a bus (full of people on their way to work).

Anonymous said...

The Republicans had a tuff primary and the winner, Romney, couldn't be honest. He is a big government Republican like the Bushes, McCain, Dole, and the rest of the Republican Presidential candidates. They won't admit that they believe in a social democracy, a managed capitalist economy. The consultants keep them in the money game, if I understand Erickson, and the voters reject them.

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