Know this much. Mitt Romney isn’t going to play the sitting duck like John McCain did four years ago. His team apparently knows how to play hardball, with a sense of humor.
In a morning news conference on the steps of the Massachusetts statehouse, David Axelrod, one of Mr. Obama’s senior strategists, tried mostly in vain on Thursday to level Mr. Obama’s latest broadside on Mr. Romney’s record as governor of the state.
Instead, he was booed, heckled and chanted down by supporters of Mr. Romney who refused to let up even for a moment as Mr. Axelrod and Democratic state lawmakers sought to make their case.
With cameras rolling, the Republican hecklers yelled “We Want Mitt!” and “Broken Record!” and held signs that said “Go Back to Chicago!” Mr. Axelrod appeared bemused but rattled by them, at one point saying: “You can shout down speakers my friends, but it’s hard to etch-a-sketch away the truth.”
Weak stuff, Dave. Meanwhile, this stunt was supposed to be a secret, but these idiots can’t keep one.
The event was supposed to have been a secret. The campaign did not announce Mr. Axelrod’s appearance in Mr. Romney’s hometown until early Thursday morning, although word of it leaked out on Twitter late Wednesday.
Enter Romney spokesman Ryan Williams, who toyed with the hapless Axelrod and filled his Twitter feed with photos from this morning’s delicious ambush.
Then the Obama goons tried to bully the Romney supporters. Epic fail. The crowd even chanted “Cory Booker” at Axelrod. Hilarious.
But Mr. Axelrod’s comments — which were mostly carried live on CNN — were hard to hear amid the din of the crowd. At one point, Mr. Axelrod responded to unclear chants from the protesters, saying that “you can’t handle the truth, my friend. You can’t handle the truth.”
Can’t handle the truth? Gee, that’s original.
Even the local media wasn’t buying his nonsense.
Mr. Axelrod was also knocked off message by questions from reporters, who used the opportunity of his presence in Massachusetts to ask about controversies swirling around Elizabeth Warren, the Democratic candidate for Senate in the state.
Gee, these folks that seemed so savvy in 2008 now appear rather amateurish.
Update: Remarkably, the guy who ran the campaign of a man who served two years in the Senate called Romney a drive-by governor.
Axelrod also charged that Romney used the state as means to achieve larger ambitions. “He was a drive-by governor here for the purposes of running for president of the United States,” he said.
Is this guy for real?
Some video, via BuzzFeed.