More GOP soul searching on the PA-12 special in this story from Politico:
Oklahoma Rep. Tom Cole, a former National Republican Congressional Committee chairman, said he wasn’t discouraged by the Pennsylvania loss.
But he spoke for others in the House GOP Conference when he expressed regret over just how high the stakes had gotten in the contest for a seat held by a Democrat for 36 years.
“It snowballed into an expectations game that got out of hand,” Cole said.
Of the ads, he said: “It’s always dangerous when you try to do cookie-cutter stuff.”
California Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who is in charge of candidate recruitment for the NRCC, conceded that the $1 million-plus spent on the Pennsylvania special wasn’t well-spent.
“That’s a couple different things we’re going to have to analyze, because why does the polling show that we were close the whole time and then it not be close on election night?” McCarthy said on ABC’s “Top Line” program. “That’s a mistake on our part; that’s a mistake on our investment that we have to make a correction to.”
He said the commitee would “audit” its effort in the old Murtha seat.
Other Republicans, both inside and outside the Capitol, were as candid in acknowledging that they haven’t yet found the formula for victory.
“It is a wake-up call that we need to do better,” Arizona Rep. Jeff Flake said of the Pennsylvania results. “I still think it’s going to be a big year; the wind is blowing in our favor, but it’s a wake-up call.”
Utah Rep. Jason Chaffetz criticized the quality of the GOP’s campaign in the old Murtha district.
“You need to have a good grass-roots coalition. They didn’t,” Chaffetz said of Republican Tim Burns’s effort, adding: “30-second ads don’t win Republicans elections.”