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Giuliani Hires E-Campaign Expert

As Dan Balz and I wrote in today's Post, presidential candidates on both sides are focused heavily on bolstering their Internet presence through a variety of new tools, including video, podcasts and even online video chats.

To brainstorm and implement these new innovations, the campaigns are chasing after a small group of people in their 20s and early 30s versed in the language of the new media.

One of the real "gets" on the GOP side of that world is Patrick Ruffini, who served as the Web master of President Bush's 2004 reelection campaign and then served in a similar role at the Republican National Committee. Ruffini gained recognition in national Republican circles for his blog, which was one of the first serious attempts on the Republican side at building an online community.

Ruffini has signed on with former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's presidential campaign as an e-campaign adviser. The hiring is only the latest sign that Giuliani is serious about a run for national office in 2008.

In building a national staff, Giuliani has recruited a number of former Bush operatives to his cause -- the latest being Brent Seaborn, who will be the director of strategy for the campaign. Seaborn was intimately involved in the microtargeting efforts credited with growing the number of Republican votes for Bush in 2004. Seaborn was a co-founder of TargetPoint Consulting, which specialized in microtargeting and data mining.

In his new role on the Giuliani campaign, Seaborn will be tasked with the construction of a consulting team -- from picking the pollster and the media consultant to organizing the direct-mail operation. As The Fix has noted before, the major gap in Giuliani's political team at the moment is in the consulting world. In past races he has used Adam Goodman for media and Frank Luntz as his pollster, but the hiring of Seaborn -- and his job description -- would seem to suggest that Hizzoner is on the hunt for a new team.

As for campaigning online, Giuliani is far from the only candidate to recognize the opportunities and perils of the Web. Sen. John McCain's campaign employs a videographer who records many his political speeches; former Gov. Mitt Romney (R) has several staffers tasked with monitoring the blogging world and a video team on retainer to tape and produce segments like like these.

Democrats, too, are deeply invested in Web video and other technological advances. Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.), and Barack Obama (Ill.) and former Sen. John Edwards (N.C.) each announced their campaign plans via video, and all three campaigns are putting special emphasis on building a Web presence. Clinton will host the first in a series of online chats tonight at 7 p.m ET.

By Chris Cillizza  |  January 22, 2007; 2:45 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: Dems Offer Olive Branch to Bush?

Comments

Not sure if I should post this here since the medium is YouTube, and they say the medium is the message nowadays... yadayadayada.

Or should I leave this little political dropping over on your S.C.-oriented post since it is all about South Carolina and Rudy's chances in the (R) primary there next year? When in doubt, do both!
Here 'ya go:

http://spaceygreview.blogspot.com/2007/02/let-conversation-on-rudy-giuliani.html

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www.rudyguiliani.com takes people to an article about adultery... weird, huh??

Posted by: Republican Dave | February 4, 2007 3:13 PM | Report abuse

US President Tim Kalemkarian, US Senate Tim Kalemkarian, US House Tim Kalemkarian: best major candidate.

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Posted by: Brad | January 26, 2007 11:29 PM | Report abuse

What's the margin of error in that poll?

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | January 24, 2007 6:51 AM | Report abuse

JEP, you know full well that to judge electability based solely on one poll in one state a year before its caucuses is not credible. Are you arguing that Giuliani is the most likely Republican nominee? I'd love to hear how you think he wins their nomination. Voters aren't even paying attention to this race yet, and haven't heard from the candidates about who they are and what they want to do. These polls measure nothing but name recognition right now. Moreover, the margin in every one of the pairings you cited above is 1-5 points. I could name a bunch of candidates just from 2006 who were ahead by that kind of margin a year ago and lost 2 months ago. We could start with George Allen.

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | January 24, 2007 6:49 AM | Report abuse

The latest Princeton Poll of likely Iowa Cauaus-goers. Instead of pitint the Dems against each other, this poll has pitted the Dems against the leading Republicans (McCain and Giuliani.

And those are the numbers that really count. Only Edwards holds an edge, thus far, and he's got rome to keep moving up in places where Hillary in particular will never make any headway because of her "negatives." With the unions, for instance, and with anti-war progressives in particular, although I still think Hillary's war stance is representative of hewr constituents more than it is her own, which I respect because that IS her job, to represent her constituents and partivularly their majority opinion.

That being said, I still think Edwards is the only one in the mix who has the whole balance of factors that can beat the R's and take back the White House, to return control of two of our checks and balances to We, The People.

Here's that poll.

"Suppose you had to choose between Hillary Clinton, the Democrat, and John McCain, the Republican. Who would you be more likely to vote for? As of today, do you lean more toward Clinton, the Democrat; or McCain, the Republican?"

Total Clinton 48%
Total McCain 47%
Undec./Other 5%

Republicans
Total Clinton 9%
McCain 87%
Undec./Other 4%

Democrats
Total Clinton 81%
McCain 17%
Undec./Other 1%

Independents
Total Clinton 43%
McCain 49%
Undec./Other 8%

3b. Suppose you had to choose between Barack Obama, the Democrat, and John McCain, the Republican. Who would you be more likely to vote for? As of today, do you lean more toward Obama, the Democrat; or McCain, the Republican?

Total Obama
Total McCain
Undec./Other

Current Total
Total Obama 46%
Total McCain 44%
Undec./Other 10%


Republicans
Total Obama 11%
Total McCain 83%
Undec./Other 6%

Democrats
Total Obama 79%
Total McCain 16%
Undec./Other 5%

Independents
Total Obama 40%
Total McCain 44%
Undec./Other 16%


3c. Suppose you had to choose between John McCain, the Republican, and John Edwards, the Democrat. Who would you be more likely to vote for? As of today, do you lean more toward McCain, the Republican; or Edwards, the Democrat?
Total Edwards 48%
Total McCain 43%
Undec./Other 9%

Republicans
Total Edwards 7%
Total McCain 86%
Undec./Other 7%

Democrats
Total Edwards 84%
Total McCain 14%
2%

Independents
Total Edwards 44%
Total McCain 42%
14%

6a/b. Suppose you had to choose between Hillary Clinton, the Democrat, and Rudy Giuliani, the Republican. (Choices rotated) Who would you be more likely to vote for? As of today, do you lean more toward Clinton, the Democrat; or Giuliani, the Republican?

Total Clinton 47%
Total Giuliani 48%
Undec./Other 5%

Republicans
Total Clinton 5%
Total Giuliani 92%
Undec./Other 3%

Democrats
Total Clinton 84%
Total Giuliani 15%%
Undec./Other 1%

Independents
Total Clinton 42%
Total Giuliani 50%
Undec./Other 8%

7a/b. Suppose you had to choose between Barack Obama, the Democrat, and Rudy Giuliani, the Republican. Who would you be more likely to vote for? As of today, do you lean more toward Obama, the Democrat; or Giuliani, the Republican?

Total Obama 45%
Total Giuliani 47%
Undec./Other 8%

Republicans
Total Obama 10%
Total Giuliani 84%
Undec./Other 6%

Democrats
Total Obama 76%
Total Giuliani 20%
Undec./Other 4%

Independents
Total Obama 39%
Total Giuliani 49%
Undec./Other 12%

8a/b. Suppose you had to choose between Rudy Giuliani, the Republican; and John Edwards, the Democrat. Who would you be more likely to vote for? As of today, do you lean more toward Giuliani, the Republican; or Edwards, the Democrat?

Total Edwards 48%
Total Giuliani 45%
Undec./Other 7%

Republicans
Total Edwards 8%
Total Giuliani 88%
Undec./Other 4%

Democrats
Total Edwards 82%
Total Giuliani 17%
Undec./Other 1%

Independents
Total Edwards 43%
Total Giuliani 43%
Undec./Other 14%

So, do we decide to pick a candidate who can actually win against Republicans, or will we pick a candidate who can only dbeat their fellow Democrats?

I suspect these poll numbers won't tighten, either, these numbers will continue to widen after Edwards has an opportunity to put his debating skills to work, without taking his directions from ambitious, sleazy staffers, like he was subjected to as the VP candidate for Kerry.

Posted by: JEP | January 23, 2007 9:23 AM | Report abuse

McCain is old, but he did look, sound, and act especially lethargic if not pathetic on MtP Sunday. He'll be 72 in 2008 (older than Reagan was in 1980), and I'd *love* to see him run against a 47 year old Obama in the '08 general. When does the older candidate ever win such a generational contest?

http://sandwichrepair.blogspot.com

Posted by: Sandwich Repairman | January 23, 2007 2:03 AM | Report abuse

I also saw McCain on that interview. I like McCain, but he was like a zombie. It was awful.

I was wondering if there was a serious delay or other problem with his receiving the questions by satellite hookup. He would stare blindly for a while before answering.

Posted by: Batman | January 22, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

I hate to be so small-minded, but in addition to his other failings (like, supporting Bush), Ruffini once seemed to think that Puerto Ricans were "first-generation Hispanic immigrants": tinyurl.com/3arvy8

Posted by: LonewackoDotCom | January 22, 2007 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Just a second while I notify both parties to purge their candidate lists of anyone who uses "gimmicks," now that Wightman-Cervantes says gimmicks are evidence of "want of a moral compass" and he is "timed" of candidates like that. If using modern technologies to tell voters one's story risks being accused of resorting to "gimmicks," we need guidance as to which media are and are not acceptable.

Is it OK to use radio, for example? It may seem to us as though candidates always have, but it was new in the last century. I'm assuming TV is out--forbidden by the Wightman-Cervantes Gimmick Detector Formula. It is way too recent.

What about direct mail? Is that a gimmick? First-class mail has been around since we've been a country, but air mail or bulk mail, also new in the last century, may be on the Wightman-Cervantes "Forbidden Gimmicks" list.

There has been something like a 50-year drumbeat of criticism of politicians for not doing enough to engage our interest in the process to tempt a higher percentage of us to exercise our voting franchise, so when newer, more intimate ways of communicating come along--especially those which could facilitate some two-way communication--we ought to be DEMANDING that politicians take advantage of them, not advancing the ludicrous notion that doing so makes one a gimmick candidate.

Posted by: LonestarJR | January 22, 2007 5:20 PM | Report abuse

"You got to have a gimmick" remember the line from gypsy rose lee - These gimmicks are nothing more than another way to push their "sound bite" of the day - still no substance - the e-campaign will prove to fail as a gimmick in avoidance of substance

I have stayed away from posting for a while because I needed to ponder my frustrations with gimmicks -

If I vote in the primaries it will be the Democratic primary - as of now because no one is running as a democrat worth my vote, I will not be voting in the primary and will probably opt to sign to put independents on the ballot.

Here is the scoop - Moral Compass - if you do not have a moral compass then you do not merit my support -(gimmicks like e-campaigning are evidence of a want of a moral compass) I look at Obama's jaw dropping explanation for why he opposes gay marriage and am left to conclude he is nothing more than a one man gimmick - while I expect Republicans to dictate to my church whether or not my church under freedom of religion can marry me, I expect better from Democrats -

He does not have the courage to be honest about the issue so he plays the gimmick - tell them what they want to hear - HRC is no better.

The other issue is "corn syrup" corn syrup is causing a health crisis among our children - neither Obama nor HRC will tackle the issue because it is a non win issue in Iowa - so dam the children.

Taking on hard issues and being honest is evidence of a moral compass - Obama and HRC just do not have a moral compass.

The point is I am timed of gimmicks like e-campaigning adn gimmick candidates like Gulliani, McCain, Obama, and HRC

Bobby Wightman-Cervantes
www.balancingtheissues.com

Posted by: Bobby Wightman-Cervantes | January 22, 2007 4:10 PM | Report abuse


'Who invented the internet? I seem to remember it was a D candidate claiming it.'


That was another smear by the press.

Gore never said it.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 22, 2007 3:55 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I guess he's remembered primarily as a joke. He was a laff riot, the stuff that would come out of his mouth. Truth is, though, he was a lot smarter than bushie. But the press didn't get all moony around republicans so much then.

Posted by: drindl | January 22, 2007 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Who invented the internet? I seem to remember it was a D candidate claiming it.

Posted by: SDR | January 22, 2007 3:52 PM | Report abuse

drndl:

I am under 40 and I know who Dan Quayle is - and I remember the whole 'potato' event - which just might have been the highlight of his Vice Presidency!

Posted by: star11 | January 22, 2007 3:48 PM | Report abuse

I remember Edwards announcing in an event in New Orleans.

Richardson announced via the web and overnight his net roots members on America for Richardson tripled.

Posted by: RMill | January 22, 2007 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Quayle is not running? I'm crushed. We could use a little humor in these campaigns. He's a riot. But nobody under the age of 40 knows who he is.

Yeah, Patrick Ruffini, now he's a winner. Just got out of college, perfect age to join the military and fight for his country -- but he was a College Republican and they don't fight, do they? Ever. ... I mean they type instead, you know? Yellow elephants.

And this is how prescient he was just last year -- Frist and Allen, yeah they're going places:

'Never let it be said that you can't have fun with polls! This is where things stand a little after midnight on the East Coast, with just south of 7,000 votes counted:
Results:
Allen (37.7%)
Giuliani (34.4%)
Romney (11.8%)
McCain (9.6%)
Frist (5.8%)'

And Brent Seaborn was at RNC as Deputy Director of Strategy --and that worked out really well.

And this is what Targetpoint does... essentially data mining. For a party that doesn't 'listen to polls' they like to dig pretty deep into people's persona data:

'Republican firms, including TargetPoint Consultants and National Media Inc., delved into commercial databases that pinpointed consumer buying patterns and television-watching habits to unearth such information as Coors beer and bourbon drinkers skewing Republican, brandy and cognac drinkers tilting Democratic; college football TV viewers were more Republican than those who watch professional football; viewers of Fox News were overwhelmingly committed to vote for Bush; homes with telephone caller ID tended to be Republican; people interested in museums, fashion and theater tended to be Democratic.

Surveys of people on these consumer data lists were then used to determine "anger points" (late-term abortion, trial lawyer fees, estate taxes) that coincided with the Bush agenda for as many as 32 categories of voters, each identifiable by income, magazine subscriptions, favorite television shows and other "flags." Merging this data, in turn, enabled those running direct mail, precinct walking and phone bank programs to target each voter with a tailored message.'

Posted by: drndl | January 22, 2007 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Dan Quayle just announced that he will not be running for POTUS in 2008 - really? Seriously? Who does he think he's kidding? Sorry - I literally laughed out loud when this was announced on CNN.

Posted by: star11 | January 22, 2007 3:09 PM | Report abuse

Hi Chris-

Totally off topic, but I really like the sit down you had with Shailigh, Dan and err forgot the other guy Johnathan??? Anyway I think its s terrific addition to the .com page and hope to see more of these.

If you continue to moderate these video chats, I have a small suggestion. Try to keep the questions brief and to the point. While we all know you have knowledge on the issue at hand, let that come out in response to the question (or get someone to ask you a question) but not in long meandering questions worthy of the WH press corps ;-)

Posted by: WOW | January 22, 2007 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Hey Chris,

What was with McCain on Meet the Press yesterday? Was he sick? On medication? Sleep-deprived? Tired of lugging around his views on Iraq? He did not seem to possess the energy at this early stage of the campaign to be able to last until New Hampshire and beyond. He looked dog tired. Any insights?

Rich Evans
Orlando

Posted by: Rich Evans | January 22, 2007 2:59 PM | Report abuse

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