Is John Kerry a good fill-in for Mitt Romney?
June 19th, 2012
03:29 PM ET

Is John Kerry a good fill-in for Mitt Romney?

By CNN's Jack Cafferty:

John Kerry will play Mitt Romney in debate preparations for the president.

And it's just perfect: one elite, rich, emotionless Massachusetts politician filling in for another.

The Boston Globe first reported that Senator Kerry has been tapped to mimic the presumptive GOP nominee in debate practice.

That means Kerry will do everything from anticipating Romney's answers and his attacks to copying his speaking style and his posture.

Of course Kerry has lots of experience in presidential debates since he faced off against George W. Bush three times in the 2004 campaign. Most people agreed Kerry won those debates even though Bush went on to win the election.

President Obama's senior campaign strategist David Axelrod says Kerry is an expert debater who has mastered a wide range of issues including Romney's Massachusetts.

Kerry has observed Romney's role in Massachusetts politics going back to 1994, so he should be in a good place to point out Romney's weaknesses while governor, especially his economic record.

Axelrod calls Kerry "the obvious choice." Which may be true in more ways than one.

As the Globe notes, critics blast both Kerry and Romney for being aloof and for flip-flopping on major issues.

Plus, they're both rich. Really, really rich. Romney has an estimated net worth of $250 million while Kerry's is at around $193 million.

Meanwhile John Kerry could wind up playing a larger role in a second Obama term if the president manages to win re-election. There's growing speculation that Kerry could take over as Secretary of State if Hillary Clinton leaves as planned.

As for who will play Obama in Romney's debate practice - no word yet.

Here’s my question to you: Is John Kerry a good fill-in for Mitt Romney?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


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Filed under: 2012 Election • John Kerry • Mitt Romney
June 29th, 2010
05:00 PM ET

Republican Brown outpolls Dems Obama & Kerry in Mass.

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

If this doesn't set off huge warning bells for the Democratic Party, it should:
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/06/29/art.s.brown.jpg caption="FILE PHOTO: Scott Brown (R-MA) participates in a ceremonial swearing-in February 4, 2010 on Capitol Hill after winning a special election for the seat that was held by the late Ted Kennedy."]
Newcomer Republican Senator Scott Brown is more popular in Massachusetts than top Democrats, like Pres. Obama and Sen. John Kerry. We're talking about Massachusetts here... the liberal bastion of politics where the late Ted Kennedy held his senate seat for nearly five decades.

A new Boston Globe poll shows that 55 percent of Massachusetts residents have a favorable view of Brown, who's been in Washington for only five months. 18 percent view him unfavorably...

Compare that to Pres. Obama, who gets a 54 percent favorable rating in Mass. And 41 percent unfavorable. Or the state's other Senator, John Kerry, who has been in the Senate for years - he gets a 52 percent favorable rating... and a 37 percent unfavorable rating.

The poll also shows support for Brown runs deep; with majorities of Republicans and Independents... and a plurality of Democrats - viewing him favorably.

Democrats are hoping to defeat brown in 2012 - when he has to run for a full term. They want to recapture Ted Kennedy's seat.

That's a very tall order at this point. Brown has become a hugely popular figure on the national stage, and that means he should have no trouble raising whatever money he needs to run for re-election.

People also like the fact that as a candidate, Brown said he would be an Independent person in Washington - and he has stuck to that... at times voting with Republicans, at times crossing the aisle to work with Democrats. Imagine that - a politician who keeps his word. The sky could be the limit for him.

Here’s my question to you: Republican Sen. Scott Brown outpolls Democrats Pres. Obama and Sen. Kerry in Massachusetts. What's up with that?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: John Kerry
August 14th, 2008
01:41 PM ET

Can swift boat author sink two Democrats?

Author of swift boat book that attacked John Kerry in 2004 is now going after Barack Obama. (PHOTO CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Summertime and the swift boats are sailing.

The author of the book that attacked John Kerry's record on a Vietnam War Swift boat, and ultimately torpedoed his campaign, is now going after Barack Obama.

Jerome Corsi is out with "The Obama Nation", which will debut at number 1 on the New York Times best-seller list this Sunday. It portrays Obama as a radical liberal who's tried to cover up his connections to Islam. The book also questions whether Obama's drug use as a youngster ever ended. Real nice stuff.

Critics say that a lot of the book's accusations are unsubstantiated or just not true. Corsi has a record of putting out lots of wild theories in other books that call into question his credibility. And, Obama's campaign says the book is "nothing but a series of lies that were long ago discredited".

Nonetheless, political attack books – like "Unfit for Command" about John Kerry – have become a pretty effective tool in campaigns. The former Democratic presidential candidate was criticized for responding too late to the swift boat attacks.

This is why Kerry along with some of his former top aides say the Democrats have to fight back hard and quickly this time around. Kerry launched a web site yesterday questioning the claims in Corsi's book. And, his former chief strategist says Obama's campaign has to "debunk every single assertion" in the book, although he acknowledges it's a fine line to walk in not drawing too much attention to the book in the process.

Here’s my question to you: Can the author of the swift boat book sink two Democrats in a row?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?


Filed under: Barack Obama • John Kerry