On the heels of Tuesday’s results, Obama’s ability to take a punch and deliver an effective counterpunch is the key question going forward in this race.
But I’m not sure that the Axelrod Formula, summarized by the NYTimes:
Over the last year, though, Mr. Obama has struggled to deliver that examination [of Clinton’s record]. He picks up the cudgel, and then sets it down. The problem is that Mr. Obama has built a campaign persona as the man of hope, a young candidate with oratorical skills who promises to build bridges across the ideological divide.
allows for this type of behavior.
If you recall the experience of another Axelrod client – Deval Patrick – he was able to avoid most of the negative campaigning in the general election by leaving it to Christy Mihos, who was only too happy to oblige, attacking Healey at every opportunity.