Tags: Trump Administration | Barack Obama | Hillary Clinton | oconnell | campaign | clinton scandals | obama failures

Ford O'Connell: Make Election About Obama's Failures, Clinton's Scandals

Image: Ford O'Connell: Make Election About Obama's Failures, Clinton's Scandals

 President Obama and Hillary Clinton (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

By    |   Sunday, 21 Aug 2016 12:56 PM

Donald Trump has to make the presidential election a referendum on Hillary Clinton if he wants to win the White House, top GOP strategists say.

In interviews with The Hill posted Sunday, Republicans note Clinton is focused on attacking Trump on his temperament and judgment – and that he can't play into that narrative by veering off message.

"If Trump is going to win, this campaign cannot be about his personality and fitness to be president," veteran GOP strategist Ford O’Connell, who worked on Sen. Jon McCain's 2008 campaign, tells The Hill.

"It has to be a referendum on Clinton specifically being a continuation of the failed [President Barack] Obama record and Clinton’s list of scandals."

Former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said a retooled Trump campaign structure is now "squarely focused on" Clinton's vulnerabilities.

"Sometimes you have to change things, particularly in a campaign that in the last three of four weeks has missed, in my opinion, opportunities to go after Hillary Clinton for the failures of her campaign and to point out those failures," the now CNN commentator said Friday, The Hill reports.

"I don’t think they’ve done a good job on that. But what you have now with [newly appointed campaign manager] Kellyanne Conway, a messaging expert, she’s someone who is going to relay those bullet points to Mr. Trump about some of the issues the Clinton campaign and Hillary Clinton have done."

O'Connell tells The Hill he expects new campaign CEO Stephen Bannon, a former Breitbart News executive, to be keenly Clinton-focused.

"You can’t just comment on the news as it comes down the pipe or on the scandal of the day, you have to create a long-arc narrative, and I think that’s something Steve Bannon might focus on in an intense way," O'Connor tells The Hill.

"You may have to throw the kitchen sink at the wall, and some people may just have to bite their tongue along the way."

The Hill notes conservatives have been frustrated at the lack of focus by Trump on Clinton stumbles – including allegations surrounding the Clinton Foundation, the appearance of the Orlando shooter's father at a Clinton rally and her notable lack of press conferences. 

"Beating Hillary Clinton is very possible if the race became a referendum on her," GOP strategist Mike DuHaime, who advised New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s presidential bid, tells The Hill.

"Given the [low] favorable ratings of each, whoever this race is ultimately about will be the loser."

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Donald Trump has to make the presidential election a referendum on Hillary Clinton if he wants to win the White House, top GOP strategists say.In interviews with The Hill posted Sunday, Republicans note Clinton is focused on attacking Trump on his temperament and judgment -...
oconnell, campaign, clinton scandals, obama failures
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2016-56-21
Sunday, 21 Aug 2016 12:56 PM
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