Following up on Chris Matthews’ quaint plea for clean campaigning, Iowa voters share his rant.
Voters I spoke with frequently remarked about how they were looking for a candidate who was positive and uplifting. There seemed to be a widespread distaste for the rancor and negativity that has shaped the Iowa race. To be fair, Gingrich has campaigned on a promise to not go negative, so his rallies likely attract people who respond to that message. But there is evidence that positive campaigning works in Iowa — Herman Cain, Gingrich, and now Rick Santorum have all arguably been buoyed by their unwillingness — or financial inability — to run big negative campaigns. Conversely, voters seem turned off by the negative ads run by the Romney and Perry machines, even if the attacks are also working.
Voters also want a winning candidate who knows what Iowans want from him/her. Judging from the voters Business Insider polls – hardly a representative sample – Mitt Romney is in big trouble.