Freedom’s Watch ‘paralyzed’ by ‘gridlock’ and ‘infighting.’

Last summer, the right-wing group Freedom’s Watch spent $15 million “in a nationwide advertising blitz supporting President Bush’s troop escalation in Iraq.” In September, The New York Times heralded it as “a conservative answer to the nine-year-old liberal MoveOn.org.” But a new article in the Times today admits that Freedom’s Watch “has been mostly quiet, beset by internal problems that have paralyzed it”:

Backers of Freedom’s Watch once talked about spending some $200 million, a figure that officials now say was exaggerated. Lending to the aura of ambition, the organization moved into a state-of-the-art 10,000-square-foot office in Washington and hired a staff of about 20, with talk of bringing in scores more for a vigorous campaign to promote conservative issues.

Behind the scenes, however, Freedom’s Watch has been plagued by gridlock and infighting, leaving it struggling for direction
, according to several Republican operatives familiar with the organization who were granted anonymity so they could be candid about the group’s problems.