Politics

Conservatives launch NotMittRomney.com coalition

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

A group of conservative activists and bloggers, including supporters of others running for the White House, are coming together to form a coalition called NotMittRomney.com to convince voters that the former Massachusetts governor can’t be trusted as a conservative and shouldn’t win the GOP nomination for president in 2012.

In an interview with The Daily Caller, Ali Akbar, a GOP operative who help found the coalition but isn’t publicly supporting any other candidate yet, said no other campaign is behind the effort to go after the GOP front-runner, though many of those involved in the effort include supporters of other candidates.

Akbar said the coalition has not filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) to form a political action committee yet, and won’t do so until it has spent or raised $5,000 the FEC requires to file.

Asked where the money came from to start the effort, Akbar told TheDC, “I have my own firm and so a lot of this stuff was just kind of done in my own time, and just so that it complies fully with the FEC laws, we made sure it wasn’t done between the hours of 9 to 5 so it wasn’t a contribution by my company, but it was a contribution by individuals.”

Akbar, along with two other founders of the effort — blogger John Hawkins and Republican operative Matt Mackowiak — wrote a column in the Des Moines Register on Sunday called, “Conservative Iowans owe it to nation to reject Mitt.”

“Does anybody really have the slightest idea what Mitt Romney would do as president? Nobody can even reasonably predict where he’ll be on any issue six months from now, much less what he’d do if he became the leader of the free world,” said Hawkins, who runs Right Wing News.

A major part of the effort is to charge Romney with being a flip-flopper on the issues.

“In 2004, the American people reject John Kerry, in large part, because he was a flip-flopper who couldn’t be trusted,” the website says. “Well, Mitt Romney makes John Kerry look like Mr. Consistency in the flip flopping department. There are whole websites devoted to his ever changing positions on the issues.”

A spokeswoman for Romney, who has remained at the top of polls throughout the primary so far, did not immediately return a request for comment.

Once money is raised, according to the release, the coalition hopes to do “targeted voter contact in early states, which will include phone and door to door contact, email marketing, paid and earned media and online targeting.”

About 20 people are involved in the coalition, including supporters of businessman Herman Cain, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann.

Others listed as being part of the coalition includes GOP operative Roger Stone and conservative activist Pamela Geller.

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