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Karl Rove: Rebranding Won't Fix Hillary's Campaign Problem

Karl Rove: Rebranding Won't Fix Hillary's Campaign Problem
(Joshua Roberts/Reuters/Landov)

By    |   Thursday, 09 April 2015 06:21 AM

Presumptive Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton will need more than an image makeover to convince the electorate that she belongs in the White House, wrote Karl Rove in The Wall Street Journal.

Clinton's advisers believe that she lost in 2008 because she seemed cold and disagreeable. They are working hard to rebrand her as warm and approachable for the 2016 race.

The bigger problem, in fact, is that she lacks a rationale for running — beyond that of personal ambition, according to the veteran GOP political strategist.

She has no viable primary challenger, no shortage of money and access to the Democratic Party's top political talent. Yet polls show most Democratic primary voters would like more of a choice. Her popularity is on a downward glide from 64 percent in 2013 to 50 percent now, according to Rove.

When her campaign kicks off, the spotlight will turn to the foreign donations the Clinton Foundation has raked in. Her managers will find it challenging to control the contending elements of her world, from former President Bill Clinton and personal assistant Huma Abedin to an array of political operatives inherited from the Barack Obama campaign, wrote Rove.

She will be saddled with the liabilities inherent in Obama's policies abroad and at home, especially regarding the economy and healthcare, while trying to finesse her relationship with the unpopular president.

As her rebranding guru, Kristina Schake, tries to refashion Clinton's image, her aides will quickly enough come to appreciate that the main problem is that the former first lady and secretary of state's campaign has no clear and driving principles.

"Slogans and soft lighting can't substitute for real convictions and an authentic sense of purpose," wrote Rove.

Hillary Clinton's "run for the White House seems more about personal political ambition than the country's well being. Aides, consultants and even spouses can't change that," he concluded.

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Rebranding isn't enough to energize or give direction to Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign, because its real problem is that Clinton lacks a rationale for running — beyond that of personal ambition, veteran GOP political strategist Karl Rove writes in The Wall Street Journal.
hillary clinton, 2016, image, campaign, democrats, karl rove
Thursday, 09 April 2015 06:21 AM
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