Part Two of The Current
Opposition Research - Jeff Berkowitz
The competition to become the Republican presidential candidate is becoming increasingly vicious. The Florida primary is a crucial one for frontrunners Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich - who edged out Romney in the last primary. The latest state polls put Gingrich 8 to 10 percentage points behind Romney. But Gingrich swears he's in it til the end.
But increasingly, it's not the big gaffes that candidates need to worry about... so much as the little moments that are captured. Often on a cell phone camera. And then replayed instantly and endlessly.
These rapid fire attacks and equally rapid responses are the domain of opposition researchers ... the team of often young staffers and volunteers who dig up dirt on opponents and spread it as quickly as possible.
These teams are led by people like Jeff Berkowitz. Until 2010, he dug up dirt on Democratic candidates as research director for the Republican National Committee. He also did opposition research on GOP opponents for Rudolph Giuliani during the last Republican presidential primaries. Jeff Berkowitz was in Washington, DC.
Opposition Research - Brad Lavigne
Brad Lavigne is the campaign director for the NDP in the 2011 election. We talk about the difference between Canadian and American leadership races.
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