British Conservatives hire Obama campaign manager

LONDON, Aug. 2 (UPI) --
The British Conservative Party has hired Jim Messina, who managed U.S. President Obama's re-election campaign last year, the BBC reported Friday.

Like Obama in 2012, Conservative leaders face an uphill campaign in 2015 with the economy in a slump. They evidently hope Messina, serving as a senior strategist, can give them the benefit of his experience.

Messina is a lifelong Democrat but apparently does not consider that an obstacle to working for the British party regarded as the equivalent of the Republicans.

"I have long admired Prime Minister Cameron," he said. "While I will not be moving to London, nor will I be managing any type of day to day political operations, I will be offering strategic campaign advice leading up to 2015."

Messina will report to Lynton Crosby, the Australian "Wizard of Oz" hired in November as the Conservative campaign manager, and to the Conservative co-chairs, Grant Shapps and Andrew Feldman, Baron Feldman of Elstree, the BBC said, citing sources.

Conservative insiders told the BBC they hope the campaign will benefit from the knowledge of social media and turnout savvy displayed by the Obama campaign.


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