The Donald Trump and Gloria Allred "October surprises" landed (with a muffled thud) at just about the same time -- but the teaser announcements for them don't seem to have happened at the same time, and that has me wondering whether the Romney campaign was genuinely concerned about what Allred was about to announce, and if Trump was deployed to say something, anything, that would neutralize the impact of whatever Allred intended to reveal.
Allred's plan was mentioned in a Matt Drudge tweet on Thursday. Radar wrote about Allred's plans on Friday. Then Trump told us on Monday morning, in a tweet and a Fox & Friends appearance, that he was about to make a "big Obama announcement."
Trump's big news is a big nothing: he's just offering to make a $5 million charitable contribution if President Obama will release all his college and passport records.
Allred's big news is slightly more substantive (though Trump's fishing expedition sets the bar pretty low):
Gloria Allred's 'October Surprise': Mitt Romney Lied Under Oath to Help Staples Founder Keep Money From Wife in Divorce?Romney's been working hard to court women voters. I think his camp suspected what this might be about, or at least assumed it would involve Romney and a woman and could do actual damage to Romney in the eyes of women. One right-wing blogger speculated that Allred would be talking about a Mormon woman reportedly dissuaded from having an abortion despite a life-threatening condition.)
...Today, TMZ revealed what it believes is Allred's big "October Surprise": Romney allegedly lied under oath about the value of Staples to prevent Stemberg's wife from walking away with her fair share.
According to TMZ's sources, Romney told the court that Staples -- a company Bain Capital had invested in early on -- was "overvalued," and referred to Stemberg as a "dreamer."
Partly as a result of Romney's testimony, Maureen got relatively little in the divorce, but we're told just weeks after the divorce ended, Romney and Tom went to Goldman Sachs and cashed in THEIR stock for a fortune. Short story -- Romney allegedly lied to help his friend and screw the friend's wife over....
Now, of course, the story is "Both sides do it."
It's hard to say whether any voters would have taken Allred's efforts seriously, but I think Romney's camp wasn't taking any chances.