Obama's 2012 Strategy: Smear Romney

His reelect campaign will depict him as inauthentic, unscrupulous and "weird"

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Politico's Ben Smith and Jonathan Martin say you should get ready for some mudslinging. In a bid to to dismantle the man President Obama sees as his most likely 2012 opponent, they report his reelection team is preparing a "ferocious personal assault" on Mitt Romney's character and business background: "Obama’s re-elect will portray the public Romney as inauthentic, unprincipled and, in a word used repeatedly by Obama’s advisers in about a dozen interviews, 'weird.'" Obama strategists say the turn to a negative campaign is politically necessary as polls show more Americans believe the country is on the wrong track and disprove of his handling of the economy. The reelection team is also ripping a page out of a familiar playbook. "In a move that will make some Democrats shudder, Obama’s high command has even studied President Bush’s 2004 takedown of Sen. John F. Kerry, a senior campaign adviser told POLITICO, for clues on how a president with middling approval ratings can defeat a challenger." An Obama adviser tells Politico, "There’s a weirdness factor with Romney and it remains to be seen how he wears with the public.”

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