Tags: hillary | penn | strategist

Hillary's Camp Blames Strategist Penn

Sunday, 06 Jan 2008 12:46 PM

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In the aftermath of Hillary Rodham Clinton's third-place finish in the Iowa caucuses, the finger of blame is being pointed at her chief strategist, Mark Penn.

According to Time magazine, critics say Penn is the embodiment of all that is wrong with Clinton's campaign: "Too cautious, too arrogant, too conventional and too clueless as to how much the political landscape has shifted since the last Clinton reign."

Advisers blame Penn for not predicting Clinton's shocking results in Iowa, even telling her victory was imminent up until the moment the caucuses began. Penn also has been faulted for assuring Clinton that she would win the female vote, although Barack Obama outdrew her in that category, 35 percent to 30 percent.

"He did not predict in any way, shape or form the tidal wave we saw," one adviser told Time.

Although Penn's position could be in jeopardy if she loses to Obama in New Hampshire, there is no obvious candidate to replace him, since there is acrimony between Hillary's advisers and her husband Bill's team.

"Who they both trust — that's a very small group," one former Clinton aide told Time. "She is going to be very, very resistant to all of the white boys coming back."

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