National Journal: Romney’s challenge is to not “win himself to death”

posted at 1:55 pm on February 29, 2012 by Tina Korbe

When Mitt Romney woke up this morning after two primary wins last night, he probably enjoyed a self-congratulatory moment — but that moment couldn’t have lasted long. The GOP primary process, after all, is far from over. No sooner did the Michigan and Arizona polls close than talk turned to the Super Tuesday contests, particularly Ohio.

Romney’s victories in Michigan and Arizona make the road ahead steeper for Rick Santorum, no doubt. Romney enriched himself with delegates and notched two more first-place finishes — the kind that count the most.

Yet, in other ways, he impoverished himself. While he was surely stunned, as we all were, by Santorum’s earlier triumphant trifecta in Missouri, Minnesota and Colorado, he nevertheless expected those states to be contests. He was as polished in defeat as he had previously been in victory. But in the unexpected quest to capture his home state, he lost his footing, sacrificed some of his polish. The loss of his equanimity was evident not only in those twin fabulous flubs of his — “a couple of Cadillacs” and “NASCAR team owners” — but also in the angry, almost frightened way in which he responded to the Santorum campaign’s request to Democrats to vote in the GOP primary. Michigan rattled Romney.

In other words, he won the battle — but he spilled his own blood. Ron Fournier calls attention to this fact in National Journal today, writing that Romney’s next challenge is to not “win himself to death”:

Only a blindly loyal Romney ally would argue that the brutish GOP race has made him a better general election candidate. In fact, each stage of the race has underscored perceptions that Romney is a tone-deaf politician with an ambiguous inner core and a penchant for reminding middle class voters that he is rich and they are not. …

Romney may give President Obama a second chance with blue-collar white voters. The president lost white working-class voters by 18 points in 2008 and his party lost that group by 30 points in 2010. A growing minority population gives Obama some wiggle room in November, but the president needs a boost with the white, blue-collar voters he once accused of clinging “to guns or religion.” …

Yes, Tuesday’s results put Romney a large step closer to the nomination and in a general election fight with a vulnerable incumbent. But he still has Super Tuesday and, perhaps, several more contests ahead in the GOP nomination fight — so many chances for missteps.

In a tight election, independent voters will pick the next president. In the latest Politico/George Washington University Battleground Poll, Obama led Romney among independents by 49 percent to 27 percent.

Romney can turn those numbers around, if he doesn’t first win himself to death.

Then again, another way to look at all of this exists, too: Yes, Romney sacrificed some of his perfection, but that ultimately works in his favor. Michigan taught us again that Romney really wants to be the GOP nominee — and, ultimately, the president of the United States. His misguided attempts to connect, his sudden anger at Santorum’s “dirty tricks,” the sudden specificity of his platform — they all remind us that Romney is not a robot, but, instead, a fabulously wealthy, awkward-when-unscripted, impressively competent manager with a fantastic campaign organization and plausible ideas to improve the economy. What about that threatens to kill Romney’s candidacy?


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Loid your girns!

Bishop on February 29, 2012 at 1:58 PM

NASCAR-yeech

lol

gerry-i’m about to get killed

gerrym51 on February 29, 2012 at 1:59 PM

Someone call Mitt a Waaaaaambulance!

Roy Rogers on February 29, 2012 at 2:00 PM

People are crazy. How on earth is owning a couple of Cadillacs a flub?

John the Libertarian on February 29, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Nice post. I thought I would get that in before this turns into another Romney/Santorum supporter insult fest.

gophergirl on February 29, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Romney may give President Obama a second chance with blue-collar white voters.

What is Ron Fournier smoking? Anyone who values empathy over competence is already voting Democrat.

Kataklysmic on February 29, 2012 at 2:01 PM

I surrender.

JPeterman on February 29, 2012 at 2:03 PM

I surrender.

JPeterman on February 29, 2012 at 2:03 PM

Welcome to the dark side.

aquaviva on February 29, 2012 at 2:05 PM

Santorum campaign’s request to Democrats to vote in the GOP primary.

Heh. Actively joining the pond scum of the psychotic far left (Kos, Moore, the Obama Dirty Tricks Machine) in their attempt to sabotage the primaries is a “request” now?

whatcat on February 29, 2012 at 2:05 PM

People are crazy. How on earth is owning a couple of Cadillacs a flub?

John the Libertarian on February 29, 2012 at 2:00 PM

I don’t think it is either. Personally, I also don’t think it’s a problem to wanna bet $10k or to say, “I like to fire people,” for that matter. It’s who he is.

What irks me about Romney on a personal level is that he seems to want to run away from who he is, too quickly.

Deafdog on February 29, 2012 at 2:06 PM

I’m not sure about the premis of this article. Romney complaining about dirty tricks when he was the one that started using dirty tricks with Gingrich in Iowa, is kind of telling in its own way. He’s acting more like Donald Trump when he and his minions don’t get their way. We’ve seen the mask slip, that’s all. We have and had glossy, well slicked packages in the White House now as before.

mozalf on February 29, 2012 at 2:07 PM

Only a blindly loyal Romney ally would argue that the brutish GOP race has made him a better general election candidate. In fact, each stage of the race has underscored perceptions that Romney is a tone-deaf politician with an ambiguous inner core and a penchant for reminding middle class voters that he is rich and they are not.

Yeah, but the upside to that is he’s discovering his flaws now and dealing with them as best he can instead of entering the general election prematurely and screwing up after he’s the nominee. He’s already hired Bachmann’s debate coach which has made him far more aggressive and effective against even as skilled a debater as Newt and he’s also moved his agenda further to the right(especially on tax reform) which can only help strengthen his support amongst conservatives.

He’ll do fine with independents, but he has to wait until the time is right before reaching out to them. His initial strategery of ignoring the right and acting as if he was already in a general election campaign against Obama was arrogant and backwards and it helped pave the way for all the “not Romney” candidates to leapfrog past him in the polls. I’m hoping he’s finally figured out that the conservative base needs to at least be acknowledged and not taken for granted.

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:07 PM

Romney’s only weakness? He is too good. The Tebow of politics.

antisense on February 29, 2012 at 2:07 PM

gophergirl on February 29, 2012 at 2:00 PM

Heh! Ed should have one ongoing open thread called Candidate Cage Fight and let ‘em go at it until the convention. Maybe they’d wear themselves out.

jb34461 on February 29, 2012 at 2:09 PM

Newt, wo sind Sie?

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:10 PM

awkward-when-unscripted,

Only in quips. Romney is actually extremely impressive in the long form interview. A recent Charlie Rose (1 hour) is an example.

My criticism of Romney is his accessibility. Props to Santorum for this. Romney would benefit if he agreed to sit down for some serious interviews with serious journalists. Talk show radio also.

aquaviva on February 29, 2012 at 2:10 PM

Heh! Ed should have one ongoing open thread called Candidate Cage Fight and let ‘em go at it until the convention. Maybe they’d wear themselves out.

jb34461 on February 29, 2012 at 2:09 PM

In a perfect world. In a perfect world.

gophergirl on February 29, 2012 at 2:12 PM

He’s got the well-proportioned-tree demo locked up. Got to give him kudos for that!

Buckshot Bill on February 29, 2012 at 2:12 PM

Michigan rattled Romney.

Once again we miss the larger point. Michigan didn’t “rattle” Romney. It showed that he can respond to specific challenges, and respond in a manner that a) leads to victory and b) leaves his opponent look smaller and less of a threat in the future. Romney had a couple of gaffes, that is true. So what. They were nothing-burgers, and only interesting to the not-Romney crowd. Obama was a gaffe machine in 2008 and it didn’t matter, because they were minor, and didn’t change the essential dynamic of his campaign.

Santorum, on the other hand, laid some real rotten eggs in Michigan whose stink is going to pollute nostrils for the rest of the primary. The attack on Kennedy was foolish, inneffective, and damaging. It got applause from a base that is already in Santorum’s pocket while damaging him with moderate Catholics whom he needs to win. They’ll not soon forget, and Romney won’t let them.

Nor will Romney let anyone forget the inane strategy of getting in bed with union bosses, Michael Moore, Daily Kos, and the rest of the Dem hate machine to demagogue Romney on the auto bailout and dredge up votes for Santorum. It was disgusting, and Romney was smart to get in front of the cameras on election day to make sure everyone in Michigan who watches the news found out what was going on. That, more than anything else, killed Santorum, it he’s going to continue to be hurt by that decision for some time.

Romney’s opponents occasionally get there licks in, and sometimes he staggers from the blows. But then he gets right back up, shakes his head, and moves in for the kill. He’s good at politics, much better than he was four years ago. Right now, Santorum is just a punk.

Mr. Arkadin on February 29, 2012 at 2:13 PM

Check this story for definitive proof of Romney’s humanity: SOMETIMES YOU NEED A HERO.

Mutnodjmet on February 29, 2012 at 2:14 PM

I don’t want a best friend or a consultant on morals, just someone capable of leading us out of this fiscal mess. I don’t even have to like him.

a capella on February 29, 2012 at 2:14 PM

Where is joana, I miss that high horse she rides.

Bishop on February 29, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Welcome to the dark side.

aquaviva on February 29, 2012 at 2:05 PM

Well?

JPeterman on February 29, 2012 at 2:16 PM

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:10 PM

Hangin’ in there

Flora Duh on February 29, 2012 at 2:17 PM

Romney may give President Obama a second chance with blue-collar white voters.

Ouch!

Fallon on February 29, 2012 at 2:17 PM

How excited is Sarah Palin and the base about a Romney nomination?

What exactly is the difference between Romney and a rock? Nothing! Both have zero charisma, although you could make the claim that a rock falling from a hill does create some excitement to watch.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:18 PM

His misguided attempts to connect, his sudden anger at Santorum’s “dirty tricks,” the sudden specificity of his platform —

I don’t understand why scare quotes are bracketing “dirty tricks”. I’d say Santorum engaging in active collusion with Michael Moore Democrats, Marxists such as UAW President Bob King, and other professional Leftists to undermine a fellow Republican in a Republican primary constitute a dirty trick without benefit of scare quotes. I’d also say Santorum’s outright lying on that cute little robocall of his was fairly sleazy too, but I guess if Gingrich could get a pass on brazen dishonesty when he was the Not Romney flavor of the week, so can Santorum. But hey, for the record (and correct me if I’m wrong), but didn’t Santorum side with Romney and initially speak out against the auto bailouts? Square that circle, please.

troyriser_gopftw on February 29, 2012 at 2:18 PM

Where is joana, I miss that high horse she rides.

Bishop on February 29, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Down at the copy machine, running off notes on all published political data anywhere in the world,..and Wisconsin.

a capella on February 29, 2012 at 2:18 PM

and a Sliming Operation second to none….

james23 on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

So his challenge is not “winning himself to death”? Really? Yes, all that winning is sure horrid.

Minnfidel on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

gophergirl on February 29, 2012 at 2:12 PM

If he’s looking for hits, this open thread could get him (in my best Carl Sagan voice) billions and billions of hits.

jb34461 on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

Romney may give President Obama a second chance with blue-collar white voters.

This is a no brainer….Thats why I didn’t want Santorum to win.

Romney is too rich to connect to the blue collar folks. Heck Romney is too rich to connect to anyone.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

What exactly is the difference between Romney and a rock? Nothing! Both have zero charisma, although you could make the claim that a rock falling from a hill does create some excitement to watch.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:18 PM

Granted, watching Joe Biden is wildly entertaining. So there’s that.

troyriser_gopftw on February 29, 2012 at 2:20 PM

Not good to brag about wealth.

Most likely he owns several other cars as well. I mean you fly from one state to another thus need vehicles in each State where you own a home. Guess the others are not American. With the kind of money Mitt has 50k for a car is pocket change.

Steveangell on February 29, 2012 at 2:20 PM

Romney has several problems, Romneycare and his very public support of TARP are two huge policy problems, his liberal past and the fact that he cannot relate to people outside his affluent bubble is another. All show that Romney is, at his core, an elitist and a political opportunist.

For those of you who do not know, Mitts father , George, was very liberal. He was the republican governor of Michigan but refused to support Goldwater. Mitt was greatly influenced by his father and until he ran for President in 2008, he was very liberal.

The working class doesn’t like Obama but they don’t like the elitist “fat cats” of Wall Street either. Many will stay home. You can call this class warfare, or whatever, but it does exist. Look at how Newt used it against Romney.

Romney cannot help that he is an elitist; it is the only life he has ever known. Why does this matter?
Anyone who is President makes decisions based on their life’s experiences. Look at Obama.

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:21 PM

What exactly is the difference between Romney and a rock? Nothing! Both have zero charisma, although you could make the claim that a rock falling from a hill does create some excitement to watch.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:18 PM

Does this uncharismatic rock think of the Constitution as a charter of negative liberties that is basically an obstacle to his agenda? Oh, he doesn’t? Fantastic–I can’t wait to vote for him.

Kataklysmic on February 29, 2012 at 2:21 PM

Anyone that has to make that many fake face contortions in some attempt to display humility instantly earns my distrust. It only gets worse when he opens his mouth.

As said before, romney = obama. Unfortunately, it’s looking like he’s going to be able to prove it. At least in the general election. He might not make potus, but really it makes no difference if he wins or loses, the government will safely stay on the progressive path either way.

Wolfmoon on February 29, 2012 at 2:22 PM

This is a no brainer….Thats why I didn’t want Santorum to win.

Romney is too rich to connect to the blue collar folks. Heck Romney is too rich to connect to anyone.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

He’s not too rich. He’s too stiff and comes off as fake and pandering. I hear people say all the time that he’s a really nice guy when you get to meet him and talk to him, but for some reason he’s just not good at retail politics.

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:22 PM

So his challenge is not “winning himself to death”? Really? Yes, all that winning is sure horrid.
Minnfidel on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

If Romney wants to be President he really needs to stop winning so many elections! Or something.

whatcat on February 29, 2012 at 2:23 PM

So far he has only one the primary in one state that McCain held in 2008, Arizona. Every other state that went red in ’08 hasn’t gone Mitt in ’12. So I think Mitt is in no danger of winning himself to death.

Buckshot Bill on February 29, 2012 at 2:26 PM

Sorry, Tina Korbe, but your assessment of Romney’s response to Santorum is way off. “Angry, almost frightened”? Are you serious?

First of all, anger would be justified here. As Democratic pollster Pat Caddell pointed out last night, this was the first time since Nixon that a politician had sought to sabotage his competitor directly. It was, for me anyway, the kiss of death in my being able to support Santorum. I found it despicable.

But more to the point, Romney saw it as an opportunity which he is now using to advantage. Hold up Santorum’s poop and let the world see it.

As for frightened, I sure didn’t see that? I’m not sure what you’re talking about, actually.

The real takeaway from Michigan is that Romney has sealed up the nomination. Santorum, the last man to have a lunge at him, fell short. He had to win it. Now the best Santorum can do is muddy Romney, waste his money, and hurt the party’s chances in the fall. I’m sure that’s the route he’ll go, sadly, because he has revealed a pettiness that is very unpleasant.

Don’t misread this screed as a Romney-ite. I’ve supported just about everybody but him at one time or another. But now I support him. He will win the nomination, guaranteed. It’s time to come together, right now, over Romney.

MaxMBJ on February 29, 2012 at 2:27 PM

Romney is too rich to connect to the blue collar folks. Heck Romney is too rich to connect to anyone.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

Right on, sister. The last thing we need is some effete rich guy talking to a crowd of Iowa farmers and lamenting about the price of arugula at Whole Foods.

Bishop on February 29, 2012 at 2:27 PM

TOO BAD the ELECTION is a referendum on Ocommie’s failure and ineptitde
.
The Rominator’s all-American stature and lack of career politician, insider slime are just added benefits of Mr. Wonderful.
We should embrace and give thanks.

FlaMurph on February 29, 2012 at 2:28 PM

As said before, romney = obama. Unfortunately, it’s looking like he’s going to be able to prove it. At least in the general election. He might not make potus, but really it makes no difference if he wins or loses, the government will safely stay on the progressive path either way.

Wolfmoon on February 29, 2012 at 2:22 PM

I should have jumped off the ledge when all the people way down below were shouting “JUMP! JUMP!” Honestly, the choices some people have to make in life.

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:29 PM

What makes me laugh is when Romney makes something like the “My wife owns two cadillacs” statement and everyone starts freaking out. “OMG! Romney just told everyone he’s a plutocrat out of touch with the average voter! If only he hadn’t opened his mouth, now we’ve lost the blue collar vote! Obama will kill him in the general!”

Guess what folks. The country already knows Romney is an immensely wealthy man who has difficulty with the common touch. It’s already baked into the cake. That’s why flubs like these don’t matter; at most they remind people about what they already know. Moreover, the class warfare approach isn’t working against Romney. Gingrich couldn’t pull it off, and neither could Santorum in Michigan. And Gingrich is right; there is a strain of populism in the GOP that responds to a class-warfare attack. But not now. People need the economy to work again, and they understand that they need the plutocrats to get things running again. People may grumble about the bankers, but they are long past wanting to hang them.

Mr. Arkadin on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Anyone who thinks Romney = Obama has a serious math problem.

MaxMBJ on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

The good news is that Rick Santorum has won about half if not more Michigan delegates than Romney. So, yeah, if Romney keeps “winning” like this he may yet fail and we’ll all win in the end. On to Super Tuesday!

mozalf on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

He’s not too rich. He’s too stiff and comes off as fake and pandering. I hear people say all the time that he’s a really nice guy when you get to meet him and talk to him, but for some reason he’s just not good at retail politics.

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:22 PM

Thats what happens when you don’t spend time with regular folks.

Willard has been in the 1% circle his whole life, he doesn’t understand what it means to be poor, middle class or blue collar.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

In 2008 it was a choice between Obama and McCain. In 2012 its a choice between Obama and the man who lost to McCain.

GOP, IS THIS THE BEST YOU CAN DO?

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Only a blindly loyal Romney ally would argue

DayOldDanish? csderanged?

steebo77 on February 29, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Hangin’ in there

Flora Duh on February 29, 2012 at 2:17 PM

That actually helps Romney at this point. Newt will go up in the polls as voters’ disgust over Robogate sends Santorum down, but Newt’s already been all but ruled out by most GOP voters, so it won’t be enough to put him back into contention. It’ll only be enough to keep him and Santorum well behind Romney in states that either non-Rom might’ve won.

EricW on February 29, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Anyone who thinks Romney = Obama has a serious math problem.

MaxMBJ on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

0=0 is as good as math can get.

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Rick Santorum agrees with this headline.

Stop that winning there, Mitt!

profitsbeard on February 29, 2012 at 2:34 PM

Yet, in other ways, he impoverished himself. While he was surely stunned, as we all were, by Santorum’s earlier triumphant trifecta in Missouri, Minnesota and Colorado, he nevertheless expected those states to be contests. He was as polished in defeat as he had previously been in victory. But in the unexpected quest to capture his home state, he lost his footing, sacrificed some of his polish. The loss of his equanimity was evident not only in those twin fabulous flubs of his — “a couple of Cadillacs” and “NASCAR team owners” — but also in the angry, almost frightened way in which he responded to the Santorum campaign’s request to Democrats to vote in the GOP primary.

LOL. That Santorum campaign’s “request” that Dems vote? What a whitewash…they robocalled those Dems to participate in a GOP contest to vote against Romney, and used brazen sleight of hand and Occupy rhetoric to do it. Some request that is…

By the way, Ed’s postmortem this morning on MI and AZ focused almost entirely on Santorum and Ohio, and now we get more shilling for Santorum here from Tina with the ‘well, Romney won, but he also lost’ narrative. It would’ve been nice to have had some in-depth analysis of the exit polling and the raw numbers from at least MI, a contest that we’ve spent days focused on. Aside from Allah’s brief remarks last night, nothing.

changer1701 on February 29, 2012 at 2:34 PM

Anyone who thinks Romney = Obama has a serious math problem.

MaxMBJ on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Obamacare is off the table in November like it or not.

the single most defining issue for the tea party uproar is OFF

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:35 PM

let’s see now lib4life, how many rich out of touch Limousine Liberals can I mention here oof the top of my head; Robert Rubin, John Kerry, all the Kennedys, Larry Summers, Nancy Pelosi, John Edwards, Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Larry Ellison, Jon Corzine, Mark Warner, Bill & Hillary Clinton, Herb Kohl, Jay Rockefeller, Diane Feinstein, and on, and on and on.

Hypocrites, one and all.

jb34461 on February 29, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Funny that you pick out the Ron Fournier article from National Journal, which is clearly negative toward Romney, and ignore an equally fine article from Ron Brownstein which is much more positive.

In Michigan, Romney may even have demonstrated a capacity to change the composition of the electorate. His base — well-educated, affluent voters –represented a notably larger share of the vote than four years ago. In 2008, voters with at least a four-year college degree comprised only 43 percent of the Michigan electorate; that spiked to 51 percent Tuesday night. Similarly, voters earning at least $100,000 annually cast only about one-fifth of the Michigan GOP ballots last time; Tuesday night that rose to one-third.

That high turnout may reflect Romney’s unique link to the state: he was reared in Oakland County. But the overall pattern of results — and conversations with dozens of Michigan voters last weekend — reinforce the sense from earlier contests that Romney is a comfortable, solid choice for the GOP’s managerial wing. These voters are drawn to his business experience, his boardroom style and the belief that he is most likely to revive the economy. Indeed, without the crossover participation from Democrats (who cast one-in-eleven ballots), Romney would have won the state by more: the exit poll found that he beat Santorum among self-identified Republicans by a surprisingly wide 49 percent to 36 percent.

Yet Tuesday’s Michigan results also underscored the durable resistance Romney faces among key components of the GOP’s populist wing. In Michigan, the ideological vanguard of the party consolidated around Santorum. That suggests he maintains the ability to wound Romney in states where those voters dominate the GOP electorate-mostly in the South and across the Heartland.

But, as in earlier states, the exit polls show that Santorum in Michigan failed to reach beyond that ideological vanguard to unify the broader swath of blue-collar “Sam’s Club” Republicans that have been the principal target for his economic message.

In Michigan, Santorum amassed solid, but not preponderant, advantages with the key populist groups. Santorum beat Romney by 13 percentage points among voters who consider themselves very conservative and 16 percentage points among those who identify as evangelical Christians. Those advantages were narrower than Santorum’s edge over Romney with those groups in Iowa, or, for that matter, Newt Gingrich’s lead over Romney with those groups in South Carolina. (In Arizona, Santorum ran even with Romney among very conservative voters-much better than he did with those who identify as less conservative-and beat him narrowly among evangelicals.) Strong tea party supporters preferred Santorum in both states, but only by four percentage points in Arizona and eight percentage points in Michigan.

While Santorum generally ran well with those highly-ideological voters, he performed much more modestly with the broader working-class component of the GOP coalition in Michigan — voters he targeted with a sharply class-conscious message that emphasized his upbringing in a Western Pennsylvania steel town and derided President Obama as “a snob” for encouraging more students to attend college.

Michigan Could Be Romney’s Battle of the Bulge

rockmom on February 29, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Thats what happens when you don’t spend time with regular folks.

Willard has been in the 1% circle his whole life, he doesn’t understand what it means to be poor, middle class or blue collar.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Well then someone get Randolph and Mortimer Duke on the phone ASAP!

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:37 PM

In 2008 it was a choice between Obama and McCain. In 2012 its a choice between Obama and the man who lost to McCain.

GOP, IS THIS THE BEST YOU CAN DO?

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Until you figure out your party is run by the establishment I have hope for you my friend

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:37 PM

The purpose of the media is to get Obama and Democrats elected.

albill on February 29, 2012 at 2:38 PM

rockmom on February 29, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Romneys a democrat. Why do you keep insisting that HotAir pretend to support him?

Buckshot Bill on February 29, 2012 at 2:39 PM

Until you figure out your party is run by the establishment I have no hope for you my friend

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:37 PM

correction

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:40 PM

New math: O = 0

(Note the first O is a letter, the second a number. Clever, huh?)

MaxMBJ on February 29, 2012 at 2:41 PM

The loss of his equanimity was evident not only in those twin fabulous flubs of his — “a couple of Cadillacs” and “NASCAR team owners” — but also in the angry, almost frightened way in which he responded to the Santorum campaign’s request to Democrats to vote in the GOP primary. Michigan rattled Romney.

Whaaaaat? That’s an interesting way to spin it. What I’m hearing, overwhelmingly, is that voters think Santorum crossed the line with these robocalls to Democrats. Even Eric Bolling of The Five, hardly a Romney supporter went ballistic over this. Angela Tantaros said her twitter feeds blew up, Dana Perino compared it to Newt’s Bain Capital fiasco, and people like Chris Stirewalt say there’s been very bad backlash.

But yeah, Mitt was “frightened”.

Buy Danish on February 29, 2012 at 2:41 PM

Funny that you pick out the Ron Fournier article from National Journal, which is clearly negative toward Romney, and ignore an equally fine article from Ron Brownstein which is much more positive.

rockmom on February 29, 2012 at 2:36 PM

You noticed that too, huh? It’s becoming more and more of a regular thing here.

changer1701 on February 29, 2012 at 2:43 PM

I would just love to know a delegate scenario, based on the remaining calender, that shows the possibility of anyone but Romney winning. I dont see it based on the contests we have left, which ones are and are not proportional and the remaining groups of states. CNN went through this last night, they show how Romney might not reach the number he needs, but I would just love to know the scenario in which someone overtakes him based on whats left. Because if there is no scenario, why bloggers talk radio and the rest continue to pound the heck out of the probable nominee is frankly beyond me.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Romney has yet to give a reason as to why anyone should support him. He simply slashes and burns his opposition. This tactic will not work against Obama.

Vote Santorum!

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:45 PM

I should have jumped off the ledge when all the people way down below were shouting “JUMP! JUMP!” Honestly, the choices some people have to make in life.

timberline on February 29, 2012 at 2:29 PM

If we had some of the people out there (I know they exist, somewhere in this country) that are good conservatives that don’t wear their religion on their sleeve and aren’t willing to give liberals and progressives cookies to get what they want would actually run instead of us having to choose between terrible candidates we’d be so much better off of course.

We don’t live in that rabbit hole though, and as much as we might try we can’t get through the looking glass without shattering it and cutting ourselves to ribbons. This is what we have to deal with because people that would make actual good candidates are afraid of the process. I must admit, I’m one of the ones that make them afraid, but how else can we get candidates vetted if we don’t dig into them?

Nobody is perfect as a candidate, not even Reagan. There has to be some room to give for bad decisions and such. I just will not give an inch to progressives running against another progressive. Romney versus obama is worse than the lesser of two evils, it’s like picking between cyanide and strychnine.

With choices like that, the only reason to go to the polls is to vote on house, senate, and local seats that come up. I don’t want to have to say I voted for the guy that ‘fixed’ obamacare by replacing it with something just as bad; romneycare on a state by state mandate instead of a federal mandate.

Romney may be able to help the economy, maybe, and he may take a stab at the tax code, but I know in my gut in order to get that done he’s going to give such lavish gifts to the liberal progressives that it’d make obambi smile ear to ear.

No thanks.

Wolfmoon on February 29, 2012 at 2:45 PM

aquaviva on February 29, 2012 at 2:10 PM

Here ya go. Fox News, Saturday. Mike Huckabee forum with Newt, Santorum, and Mittens. (Crazy Uncle Ronnie TBD?)

http://thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/02/28/huckabee-will-host-a-presidential-forum-on-fox-news/?partner=rss&emc=rss

Please share widely cause I’ve only seen a Free Republic post besides mine.

sandollar_sa on February 29, 2012 at 2:46 PM

Romney can turn those numbers around, if he doesn’t first win himself to death.

A second look at setting his hair on fire?

Fallon on February 29, 2012 at 2:47 PM

Romney is too rich to connect to the blue collar folks. Heck Romney is too rich to connect to anyone.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

What’s your obsession with rich people? You keep harping on the “rich” thing. How come? I know you think it “plays well” but not here. Maybe it does in the liberal world but not where people look to succeed and use the opportunity this country gives them to prosper and be free.

I want someone who has proven to be successful to lead this country. Those who think differently are NUTS.

Think about it, would a board of trustees looking for a new CEO look at a guy and tell him he wasn’t a good fit because he has been “too successful”? LOL

“Silver Spoon”, and “too rich”, and “out of touch”, comments only work among those the Dems have repressed and used this mantra with for years for their votes. It’s the dog whistle among the democratic elite who want the poor people to come running and vote for them again just to see broken promises and the politicians getting rich while their constituencies have to live with their failed ideology and policies.

Midwesterner on February 29, 2012 at 2:47 PM

— but also in the angry, almost frightened way in which he responded to the Santorum campaign’s request to Democrats to vote in the GOP primary. Michigan rattled Romney.

Tina, you still don’t get it, do you?

The problem wasn’t requesting Democrats to vote for it.

The problem was calling the opposition to bailouts a slap in the face of workers to do it.

joana on February 29, 2012 at 2:48 PM

I would just love to know a delegate scenario, based on the remaining calender, that shows the possibility of anyone but Romney winning. I dont see it based on the contests we have left, which ones are and are not proportional and the remaining groups of states.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:44 PM

It’s very unlikely that anyone can beat Mittens at this point. Santorum would have to dominate next Tuesday followed immediately by Newt dropping out. If those two things happened(not impossible, but unlikely), then we’d have the possibility of this thing dragging on for another couple months and Santorum would at least have a shot at topping Romney in the delegate count.

Santorum’s problem is that his earlier campaign mishaps like failing to get on the Virginia ballot or qualify for all of the Ohio delegates are coming back to bite him in the arse. So now even if he does do well on Super Tuesday, he’ll still automatically be conceding key delegates to Romney.

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:48 PM

Will we ever get over Romney’s wealth? And this is HIS problem? (sigh) OK, fine but I do think the people who keep grasping at straws and promoting these silly intangibles have a bad case of the class envies. Thanks again, Obama for setting the agenda in our primary. Glad we could help. And I thought you were going to make us talk about Satan for months. Way to go, tools again, fools.

rhombus on February 29, 2012 at 2:49 PM

Romney has yet to give a reason as to why anyone should support him.

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:45 PM

Where have you been hiding? LOL Don’t wait to be spoon fed by the talk show guys or much of the media. It won’t happen. Listen to him. Learn about him and you will know.

Midwesterner on February 29, 2012 at 2:50 PM

This voter would like proof of the author’s mental stability —a note from a psychiatrist should be sufficient.

claudius on February 29, 2012 at 2:50 PM

That actually helps Romney at this point. Newt will go up in the polls as voters’ disgust over Robogate sends Santorum down, but Newt’s already been all but ruled out by most GOP voters, so it won’t be enough to put him back into contention. It’ll only be enough to keep him and Santorum well behind Romney in states that either non-Rom might’ve won.
EricW on February 29, 2012 at 2:32 PM

I’m not sure if the impact of Santorum’s attempted sabotage will be to that extent, but he did surely take a major potshot at his own feet.

whatcat on February 29, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Romney has yet to give a reason as to why anyone should support him. He simply slashes and burns his opposition. This tactic will not work against Obama.

Vote Santorum!

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:45 PM

I keep hearing this and I wonder what exactly Romney can say that’ll satisfy his detractors. He has an agenda he’s running on. He’s talked about restoring America’s greatness and fighting for the soul of this country. Now you can call that corny or question how committed he’ll really be to a fiscally conservative agenda based on his past rhetoric, but it’s disingenuous to say he’s not offering a reason to vote for him.

I could ask the same question of Santorum. Why should we vote for him? Or Newt? And especially Ron Paul? Seriously, what is the reasoning behind his candidacy?

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Obama will fight fire with fire. He will not sit back and get out-spent, out-attacked and respond with cheap robocolls. Willard is nothing but a bully. Beating up on people who dont have money to respond

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:52 PM

…Romney is not a robot, but, instead, a fabulously wealthy, awkward-when-unscripted, impressively competent manager with a fantastic campaign organization and plausible ideas to improve the economy. What about that threatens to kill Romney’s candidacy?

I’m sorry, but I have no idea what this means. What’s good about being awkward when unscripted? What’s bad about being an impressively competent manager? Is being fabulously wealthy an unalloyed negative (or positive)? And how does this hodgepodge add up to a threat to Romney’s candidacy?

bobs1196 on February 29, 2012 at 2:52 PM

Willard has been in the 1% circle his whole life, he doesn’t understand what it means to be poor, middle class or blue collar.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Which is a big problem because it’s good for the country to have a (formerly) middle class person who doesn’t understand basic economics or math in charge of the country./

Why are some people so opposed to having a competent, successful president?

talkingpoints on February 29, 2012 at 2:53 PM

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:48 PM

Thats what I mean, had Santorum won Michigan, I would say, Ok this guy has a real shot. But you combine the fact he isnt on Virginia ballot and the fact that Romney is going to win Idaho, Mass, Vermont, Virginia easily and have real shot at Ohio and North Dakota, theres only Ok, Tenn and GA left. Plus the calender just becomes more favorable to Romney as April goes on. I just dont see how Santorum or Gingrich overtakes Romney unless he implodes Howard Dean like.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:53 PM

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:44 PM

Santorum has a chance if he takes Ohio, PA, and Texas.

Newt is now being pumped up by the establishment, and even his own billionaire donor, because they hope he splits votes with Santorum. If Newt was the person that he says he is, and the one so many people have been fooled into believing he is, he would get out and back Santorum.

There is no scenario for Gingrich to win. Winning a few southern states will npt be enough. All he is doing now is helping Romney.

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Heres the primary calender for those interested and keep in mind my state of Texas isn’t likely to hold a primary until the end of may due to redistricting disputes:

http://www.2012presidentialelectionnews.com/2012-republican-primary-schedule/

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Ugh. This post is dripping with anti-Romney bias.

Romney’s pushback against Santorum’s flirtation with hard-left liberals has been one of the more effective attacks of Romney against Santorum—which, BTW, to his credit, has always been from Santorum’s right.

Can Santorum say the same? That in the primary fight he didn’t succumb to the temptation of liberalism and didn’t attack Romney from the left (as Gingrich has frequently done in the past)?

novakyu on February 29, 2012 at 2:57 PM

Please share widely cause I’ve only seen a Free Republic post besides mine.

sandollar_sa on February 29, 2012 at 2:46 PM

It was posted in the Open thread last night.

JPeterman on February 29, 2012 at 2:58 PM

I keep hearing this and I wonder what exactly Romney can say that’ll satisfy his detractors.
Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Romneycare was a mistake and I will do everything in my power to repeal Obamacare.

dmn1972 on February 29, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Loid your girns!

Bishop on February 29, 2012 at 1:58 PM

…………’ats my Boy!

Where is joana, I miss that high horse she rides.

Bishop on February 29, 2012 at 2:15 PM

Busy switching positions??

KOOLAID2 on February 29, 2012 at 2:59 PM

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:54 PM

Even with those states, and Ohio is a must for him, I dont see how Santorum gets to 1,144.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Thats what I mean, had Santorum won Michigan, I would say, Ok this guy has a real shot. But you combine the fact he isnt on Virginia ballot and the fact that Romney is going to win Idaho, Mass, Vermont, Virginia easily and have real shot at Ohio and North Dakota, theres only Ok, Tenn and GA left. Plus the calender just becomes more favorable to Romney as April goes on. I just dont see how Santorum or Gingrich overtakes Romney unless he implodes Howard Dean like.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 2:53 PM

You just summed it up. Santorum had almost all of his eggs in the Michigan basket. No one is calling it for Romney yet because Super Tuesday could change things and the race has been so volatile thus far. But right now it’s not looking great for Santorum. The only thing keeping him in this right now is the proportional delegates and the prospect of doing well in the South, especially if Newt doesn’t have a 3rd comeback.

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Michigan Could Be Romney’s Battle of the Bulge
rockmom on February 29, 2012 at 2:36 PM

Good piece – thanks…

Santorum has a chance if he takes Ohio, PA, and Texas.

Newt is now being pumped up by the establishment, and even his own billionaire donor, because they hope he splits votes with Santorum. If Newt was the person that he says he is, and the one so many people have been fooled into believing he is, he would get out and back Santorum.

There is no scenario for Gingrich to win. Winning a few southern states will npt be enough. All he is doing now is helping Romney.

fight like a girl on February 29, 2012 at 2:54 PM

That was entertaining. Thanks for the laugh…

Buy Danish on February 29, 2012 at 3:04 PM

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 2:59 PM

Unless Gingrich drops out, I just dont see how Santorum makes it to the convention, money wise or delegate wise.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 3:04 PM

What exactly is the difference between Romney and a rock? Nothing! Both have zero charisma, although you could make the claim that a rock falling from a hill does create some excitement to watch.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:18 PM

Ohhhhhhhhh!…and you are OOZING so much charisma!
Oh…wait!…that’s not charisma coming out the sides of your diaper.

KOOLAID2 on February 29, 2012 at 3:05 PM

Check this story for definitive proof of Romney’s humanity: SOMETIMES YOU NEED A HERO.

Mutnodjmet on February 29, 2012 at 2:14 PM

.
The Rominator- “A Triumph for American Values”

FlaMurph on February 29, 2012 at 3:07 PM

Until you figure out your party is run by the establishment I have no hope for you my friend

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:37 PM

correction

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:40 PM

Don’t want to burst your brain…but, who runs yours?

KOOLAID2 on February 29, 2012 at 3:10 PM

Willard has been in the 1% circle his whole life, he doesn’t understand what it means to be poor, middle class or blue collar.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Again…never heard that from anyone before. Ever think of taking over Carney’s job?

KOOLAID2 on February 29, 2012 at 3:12 PM

Unless Gingrich drops out, I just dont see how Santorum makes it to the convention, money wise or delegate wise.

nswider on February 29, 2012 at 3:04 PM

That’s what it comes down to. Either Newt drops out and endorses Santorum or vice versa. Otherwise it’s just a matter of time before Romney’s delegate lead becomes insurmountable.

Doughboy on February 29, 2012 at 3:15 PM

Romney makes me gag only slightly less than that obama idiot. Seriously, could Romney be any less likable, even if he tried? Yuck.

Pork-Chop on February 29, 2012 at 3:16 PM

Romney is too rich to connect to the blue collar folks. Heck Romney is too rich to connect to anyone.

liberal4life on February 29, 2012 at 2:19 PM

.
I’m sure we all connect with Okumbaya ? right ??
.
Where did this namby pamby feel your pain “connect” crap come from anyway? I don’t give a crap what corrupt politician connects with me, I just want the damn thing fixed. And if they can’t fix it, I want to fire that person and hire another one to fix it. And yeah- I want to hire someone who has had some success at fixing things. call me crazy.
.
Besides, there is no shortage of scummy corrupt politicians in DC that you can “connect” with, so have a blast with your dream date.

FlaMurph on February 29, 2012 at 3:18 PM

Romney affects me just like Obama – I can’t stand to listen to either one of them.

silvernana on February 29, 2012 at 3:19 PM

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