From the The Hill:
Some Democratic aides say Daschle’s organization became too focused on home-state concerns as Daschle’s own Senate seat became increasingly in peril.
“The way Daschle press shop was set up, it was too slow,” said one Democratic press secretary. “It was too narrow. They just didn’t do enough for other members. The message always just seemed to be Daschle’s message — as opposed to the message of the party.”
One Senate Democratic aide said Daschle’s press shop became more disciplined and active with the arrivals of communications director Todd Webster and policy adviser Phil Schiliro. But, “The perception is it probably all happened a little late,” said the aide.
An aide close to Daschle declined to provide a comment on suggestions that Daschle’s press aides could have communicated the Democratic message more effectively.
Over the last year, Daschle’s staff focused on building and coordinating a Democratic message between the House and Senate, and between various Senate Democratic offices, many of which failed to agree on policy and tactics. One Democratic Senate aide pointed to passage of the controversial prescription drug law — an issue the aide said the GOP had “stolen.”
“If the caucus had stuck together in opposition to the Republican plan, it wouldn’t — shouldn’t — have happened,” said the aide.