Wesley Clark on the Campaign Trail

There are no plans on the schedule to go to South Carolina anymore and at this point, Clark will never go to Missouri to campaign for that primary. Instead it seems clear that the campaign is focusing on wins in Oklahoma and New Mexico on Wednesday, having also announced they will be spending the evening of the primary in Oklahoma City, Okla. before heading out late in the evening for Memphis, Tenn.

The Clark campaign is not conducting internal polls in the Feb. 3 states, according to Matt Bennett, because of the cost; they are relying on public polls instead. Bennett says once this primary is done, they will evaluate where to poll next.

And in this time of uncertainty, there is talk of the future of the Clark campaign and no signs that it is slowing down. With a packed campaign schedule and no down days, Clark's traveling press secretary, Jamal Simmons, is talking to press about possible campaign stops in Feb. 10 and 17 primary states. And Clark told one supporter in Lawton, Okla. on Sunday, "I will win Super Tuesday because people in New York and California like me a lot. And they know I'm the best person to beat Bush. You know, it's just the way it's gonna work."

A 'Lehanism': "As the days grow longer, we become stronger."

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla., Jan. 28—New Hampshire seems like ages ago as Clark, staff, and press hop around to Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Arizona on the day after the primary. Campaign advance staff once trekking through snow to pound CLARK04 signs into frozen ground are now devoid of hats and scarves and on-hand to meet-and-greet in respective (and warmer) February 3rd states. And while New Hampshire days seemed long, they only get longer--campaign staff and press arrive in Oklahoma at 1:30am local time hoping to catch a couple of hours of sleep before the multi-state touring begins again.

For Clark, campaigning in the February 3rd states allows him to change his message and try new lines. Clark focuses on being an outsider in this race and on his values. In Tulsa on Wednesday morning, The General tries a more conservative message--he doesn't berate the POTUS as much as usual or talk about sexual orientation as a discriminating factor where it normally rolls off his tongue. Clark instead adds lines like--At nine years old "I accepted the Lord as my savior;" and "We are a nation that is a nation under God, we're the most religious country in the world." And finally, Clark has a new ending on the stump as he explains that "we need somebody from the heartlands" to bring the country together--"If you are happy with the direction of our country, you should support the politicians who are running it. But if you think we can build a better America, and you want someone who is part of the solution, then I am your candidate."

But even though there's a fast pace forward, there was some reflection on Tuesday's primary. Clark opened many of his rallies on Wednesday by saying that he "came in first in the non-New England, non-favorite son" primary. And Chris Lehane, Clark's communications strategist now back on the campaign trail swapping out communications director Matt Bennett, spoke about Clark's slight third place finish in Tuesday's primary he said: "You know, George Bush won by less than that and he's President today."

Page
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...