Last month, I urged the Kerry campaign to adopt a rope-a-dope strategy in the next few months to hold off the inevitable BushCo. ad blitz. Now, a lot of you made some insightful criticisms of this approach, and I've had second thoughts about whether this is the wisest strategy to pursue. However, as Josh Marshall informs us, this rope-a-dope gambit is precisely what the Kerry campaign's brain-trust has been pursuing in the past month.
The [Kerry] plan is to take these punches from the Bush campaign and let Bush burn through a lot of his money. Hopefully, in the view of the Kerry campaign, Kerry comes through that without having suffered too much damage. Then Kerry fights back with hard-hitting ads through the late spring and summer with Bush having squandered his huge money advantage.
Josh points out that this strategy may be paying off, as W's once-insurmountable fundraising advantage has all but evaporated, thanks to his campaign's incredible burn rate ($50 million in March alone). Of course, Josh also notes, with a great deal of understatement, that "[t]his is one of those strategies that is improbably brilliant unless it turns out to be completely stupid." Again, in the month since I wrote the post, I've had doubts as to the wisdom of this strategy, particularly as Kerry's negatives have shot up in key swing states. However, in spite of the recent SCLM sensationalism, Kerry continues to hold his own in the latest polls. Therefore, if the Kerry campaign can hang on through May and June, I think they'll be in a position to deliver some devastating one-two punches (OK, no more boxing analogies after this) come Boston.