Video of the Day: Is the 2012 General Election Underway?

It's no secret which Republican candidate the Democratic Party fears most.

With a new TV ad hitting Mitt Romney in five battleground states, the Democratic National Committee is acting as if the 2012 general election is already underway. The ad is a shortened version of the four-minute clip above, which the DNC is promoting online.

In two respects, it's a replay of the 2004 election between president George W. Bush and Sen. John Kerry. By the spring of 2004, before the fall election season heated up in earnest, Bush had already developed an attack line on Kerry: that he was a flip-flopper. In March, 2004 Anne Kornblut noted at The Boston Globe that Bush's first anti-Kerry Web video sought to paint him as an "unprincipled" flip-flopper on special-interest donations.

So far, Romney's Republican rivals have used the flip-flop line against him in TV debates, and it's often cited by conservative pundits who wonder if the former governor can be trusted as a guardian of their ideology. In endorsing Newt Gingrich for president, the Manchester, N.H. Union Leader alluded to Romney's chameleonic tendencies.

But the DNC has given us a preview of the general election, telegraphing that flip-flop-ism is going to be the name of the game, if Romney wins the GOP nomination. And Romney, National Journal's Beth Reinhard and Ron Fournier suggest, will likely throw the flip-flop charge right back at the president.

And, if the Democrats have trouble making their flip-flop charges stick, they can always throw in a little bit of class-warfare visuals, as Bush/Cheney '04 did in the iconic TV ad featuring Kerry windsurfing:

Video credits: DNC, Bush/Cheney '04

Presented by

Chris Good is a political reporter for ABC News. He was previously an associate editor at The Atlantic and a reporter for The Hill.

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well. Bestselling author Mark Bittman teaches James Hamblin the recipe that everyone is Googling.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash (and Why)

Cooking for yourself is one of the surest ways to eat well.

Video

Before Tinder, a Tree

Looking for your soulmate? Write a letter to the "Bridegroom's Oak" in Germany.

Video

The Health Benefits of Going Outside

People spend too much time indoors. One solution: ecotherapy.

Video

Where High Tech Meets the 1950s

Why did Green Bank, West Virginia, ban wireless signals? For science.

Video

Yes, Quidditch Is Real

How J.K. Rowling's magical sport spread from Hogwarts to college campuses

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

More in Politics

Just In