Short take: A poor choice for Michele Bachmann?

  • Article by: JENNIFER RUBIN , Washington Post
  • Updated: June 9, 2011 - 12:10 PM

Ed Rollins

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For some conservatives, Republican strategist Ed Rollins was an odd choice to run Rep. Michele Bachmann's presidential campaign.

She's fresh; he's not. She's anti-Beltway; he personifies it. She's disciplined; he's shown he's not.

The trouble started when Rollins, still in his TV analyst mind-set, went after former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, calling her "not serious."

This was dumb on multiple levels, including (in no particular order): (1) it took the focus off his boss; (2) it will offend voters who are Bachmann's natural constituency; and (3) it plays into the sexist "Palin v. Bachmann!" match-up that his boss has tried to play down.

Rollins was forced to apologize, but he couldn't resist inflaming the issue.

"As far as we're concerned," he told Politico, it's not an ongoing fight. "This was my one comment, which I shouldn't have made; at the end of the day this has nothing to do with Michele, Michele's campaign, or any of the rest of it. This was my transition from being an analyst to a political strategist, and I missed a step."

Politico also reported: "Of Team Palin's call for a retraction, he said, 'What's the retraction? I say she's serious?'

Bachmann has a reputation on the Hill as a tough boss. Perhaps she'll keep Rollins around, but no one would think ill of her if she canned him.

In fact, the sign of a good executive is the willingness to cut dead wood that is dragging the team down.

Excerpted from Jennifer Rubin's Washington Post commentary.

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