Top Romney strategist: No regrets, baby

posted at 5:11 pm on November 28, 2012 by Allahpundit

People are already tearing this up on Twitter and in the comments to the Headlines item. A few points. One: In which alternate universe was Romney not supported by “D.C.’s green-room crowd”?

I appreciate that Mitt Romney was never a favorite of D.C.’s green-room crowd or, frankly, of many politicians. That’s why, a year ago, so few of those people thought that he would win the Republican nomination. But that was indicative not of any failing of Romney’s but of how out of touch so many were in Washington and in the professional political class. Nobody liked Romney except voters. What began in a small field in New Hampshire grew into a national movement. It wasn’t our campaign, it was Romney. He bested the competition in debates, and though he was behind almost every candidate in the GOP primary at one time or the other, he won the nomination and came very close to winning the presidency.

It was the “green-room crowd” that insisted Romney would be, and had to be, nominated because he was the only guy in the GOP field who was sufficiently well funded, well organized, and moderate to give Obama problems in a general election. And they may have been right; for all his faults, I’m still not convinced that anyone else who ran last year would have done better than Mitt on November 6. Why Stevens feels obliged to ignore that chief credential, his alleged electability, in favor of some bizarre narrative here about a grassroots “movement” of Romneymania slowly building around the candidate, I don’t know. There was nothing resembling a movement until October, after the game-changing debate in Denver and the final frenzy of the campaign gave Republicans new hope that Romney really might find a way to torpedo Hopenchange after all. Before then, people were making jokes like this. In fact, the very truth of what Stevens says about Romney trailing virtually every other candidate in the primary field at one time or another puts the lie to the idea of Romneymania. The reason everyone else, including Herman Cain, did a stint as a frontrunner is because so many grassroots Republicans were loath to nominate the architect of RomneyCare. Eventually he simply outspent and out-organized the competition, and that was that. But let’s not use his own base’s ambivalence towards him for most of the campaign as some sort of testament to his resilience.

Two: I’m not sure what his point is here.

On Nov. 6, Romney carried the majority of every economic group except those with less than $50,000 a year in household income. That means he carried the majority of middle-class voters. While John McCain lost white voters younger than 30 by 10 points, Romney won those voters by seven points, a 17-point shift. Obama received 4½million fewer voters in 2012 than 2008, and Romney got more votes than McCain.

Here’s the data that I assume he’s using, from the national exit poll:

Would you consider a young adult making $40,000 a year “middle class”? If so then, per the data, the claim that Romney won a majority of the “middle class” becomes more complicated. Besides, to suggest that Romney was a hit with the middle class because he won a majority of the 50-99K crowd is misleading. He got utterly destroyed among black and Latino voters of all ages, which makes me think he almost certainly lost the black and Latino middle class by wide margins too. (There were no race/income crosstabs in the national exit poll.) Do these look like numbers you’d expect to see of a candidate who’d been a true winner among middle-class voters?

The split for Obama on that question was 10/44/31 by comparison. My strong suspicion is that Romney won the $50,000+ group because he won big with whites and whites comprise more of that group on balance than they do of the < $50,000 group. And even if I’m totally wrong about all this and Stevens is right, what’s his point? Should the GOP take comfort in having won the middle class if it continues to lose in perpetuity because poorer voters are turning out in higher numbers?

Three, this is awfully ironic: “In the debates and in sweeping rallies across the country, Romney captured the imagination of millions of Americans. He spoke for those who felt disconnected from the Obama vision of America. He handled the unequaled pressures of a campaign with a natural grace and good humor that contrasted sharply with the angry bitterness of his critics.” Why is it ironic? Because it was Stevens, more than any other Romney advisor, who was blamed for being too slow to trumpet Mitt’s warmth and generosity early in the campaign, when Obama was busy defining him as a Gekko-esque ogre to ruinous effect. Remember this Politico piece in early October about Ann and Tagg Romney allegedly staging a “mutiny” over the campaign’s one-note anti-Obamanomics message? Quote:

Chief strategist Stuart Stevens — whom the family held responsible for allowing Romney’s personal side to be obscured by an anti-Obama economic message — has seen his once wide-ranging portfolio “fenced in” to mainly the debates, and the television advertising that is his primary expertise, according to campaign officials. Tagg Romney, channeling his mother’s wishes, is taking a much more active role in how the campaign is run…

In public and private, Ann Romney made no secret of her frustrations. Candidates’ spouses often think the husband or wife is getting a raw deal, and that they are better than the political caricature being drawn. But Ann Romney’s agitation was palpable: She felt the Obama campaign had dishonestly made her husband out to be something he is not, and was eager to see a more forceful response, especially one that played up his humanity. She wanted to humanize her husband; play up his charity; and showcase how in politics, business and life, he has tried to do the right thing, even when it was not popular.

She wanted, in other words, to show off his “natural grace and good humor.” Erick Erickson was hearing complaints about Stevens weeks before that along the same lines: “Frankly, he is the senior strategy guy and the strategy clearly is not working. All you need to know is that the GOP had three nights of prime time television coverage and the people whose kids Mitt Romney helped before they died got speaking slots outside of prime time in a convention designed to make people like Mitt Romney.” Stevens’s op-ed today is titled, “A good man. The right fight.” The real right fight would have emphasized much more heavily that Romney is, in fact, a good man.

Finally, I don’t know what to say about this:

When Mitt Romney stood on stage with President Obama, it wasn’t about television ads or whiz-bang turnout technologies, it was about fundamental Republican ideas vs. fundamental Democratic ideas. It was about lower taxes or higher taxes, less government or more government, more freedom or less freedom. And Republican ideals — Mitt Romney — carried the day.

He carried the day at the first debate, yes. Not so clearly at the other two. But in the wake of Project ORCA turning into the fail whale, how can any campaign vet dismiss “whiz-bang turnout technologies” that blithely? Obama appears to have won because he figured out a way to identify and then deliver droves of “irregular voters” to the polls on election day. Sophisticated data-mining and GOTV techniques were certainly key to that; given all the election fundamentals lined up against him, the fact that he nearly duplicated his electoral-vote take from four years ago makes me wonder if they were, in fact, decisive. Maybe we shouldn’t fault Stevens, Romney’s chief strategist, for overlooking the tech gap, but when the campaign is built on the alleged managerial genius of its candidate, someone has to be faulted. The “green-room crowd” assured us Romney wouldn’t get beat on nuts-and-bolts stuff; that was one of the biggest reasons to nominate him. And yet here we are, with the consolation of Republican ideals to get us through four more years.


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The alternative is to, as per the political landscape in 1844, let the GOP wither on the vine so that conservatives can start over. Send those patronizing pseudoconservative bastards into the dustbin of history with the Whigs.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Exactly.

Dunedainn on November 28, 2012 at 6:25 PM

“In the debates and in sweeping rallies across the country, Romney captured the imagination of millions of Americans.

Oh, come on. The words “captured the imagination” and “Romney” don’t belong in the same sentence.

Dongemaharu on November 28, 2012 at 6:25 PM

Compared to Obama – an out and out marxist who lies and after Benghazi? You bet. What more does someone need? Romney, given all his faults, is a decent man who at least loves his country.

That, to me, is enough. Actually, the Putin comment was my “come to Jesus” moment. Obama is a man who will say or do anything to political ease and expediency. I repeat: That’s not enough for someone to vote *against*??? Seriously??

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Don’t piss and moan at me, pal. I pulled the lever for the GOP golden boy. And that was after numerous instances of feeling downright insulted by someone I knew who wasn’t a conservative to begin with.

What you need to do, along with the GOP apparatchiks, is figure out how to appeal to conservatives with conservative candidates who walk the walk. Bill Whittle nailed it perfectly: The GOP is busted, and Romney’s piss-poor performance against Obama is the symptom. Blaming the electorate is the last thing you should be doing right now. I promise you if this is the tack you take, you’ll be staring down the barrel of another horrendous defeat in 2016.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

So, you preferred 4 more yrs of President Eye Candy over any Squish RINO.

How hard is that to say?

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:20 PM

Not even worthy of a response.

Dunedainn on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

It was the “green-room crowd” that insisted Romney would be, and had to be, nominated because he was the only guy in the GOP field who was sufficiently well funded, well organized, and moderate to give Obama problems in a general election. And they may have been right; for all his faults, I’m still not convinced that anyone else who ran last year would have done better than Mitt on November 6.

Unprovable. What can be proven is that the electable juggernaut with his top-shelf organization and business genius lost to the Worst President in US History. The “green room crowd” is discredited forever.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Stu Stevens trying for damage control buck-passing now that future clients are bailing on him? Wonder if he’ll next try to shift the blame for a lousy campaign onto the VP candidate like Steve Schimdt and Nicole Wallace did in 2008.

The consultants always have a reason why their “brilliant” campaigns didn’t win.

Wethal on November 28, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Republicans are still buying the nonsense that America is a center-right country despite all the facts to the contrary including that the left controls the media, academia, the entertainment industry and hence the culture. I thought Romney would win because I did not think Obama would be able to get out his constituency, given that his presidency has been a miserable failure.

Mitt could perhaps have done better if Palin hadn’t prolonged the GOP primary and if the more strident members of her cult hadn’t poisoned so many minds against Romney, who was not just a good candidate but a terrific candidate. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying Palin was entirely to blame. Mitt might still have lost even if she hadn’t prolonged the GOP Primary and even if the Cult hadn’t been working overtime against him.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:29 PM

“The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.”

Tipping point.

It’s Good to be (The Food Stamp President) King.

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:30 PM

Shorter White Star flack analysis: other than hitting the iceberg, it was a great maiden voyage.

MTF on November 28, 2012 at 6:30 PM

Food for thought: why are the RINOs demanding we flee from social conservatism if the income groups we lost, namely those household earning under $50,000, tend to be:

1.) The white working class, many of whom are social conservatives, and…
2.) Racial minorities, who tend to be more socially conservative than their white counterparts, and who find economic conservatism repulsive

Stoic Patriot on November 28, 2012 at 6:31 PM

I’d like to point out that Paul Ryan did not help the ticket in any way. Not geographically, not electorally, not socially, not with his Catholic faith. VP’s are suppose to fill in the voids found in the nominees portfolio. Paul Ryan brought nothing.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Don’t piss and moan at me, pal. I pulled the lever for the GOP golden boy. And that was after numerous instances of feeling downright insulted by someone I knew who wasn’t a conservative to begin with.

What you need to do, along with the GOP apparatchiks, is figure out how to appeal to conservatives with conservative candidates who walk the walk. Bill Whittle nailed it perfectly: The GOP is busted, and Romney’s piss-poor performance against Obama is the symptom. Blaming the electorate is the last thing you should be doing right now. I promise you if this is the tack you take, you’ll be staring down the barrel of another horrendous defeat in 2016.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

The GOP can dry up and float away for all I care. It’s really over as Obama’s going to get four more years of fun and games. We have to prepare for what we are going to do AFTER that.

I’m not complaining AT you. Sorry if it seems that way. I’m not understanding the logic of those that don’t really see how harmful Obama’s going to be and decided that Romney wasn’t conservative enough compared to what’s coming.

And yes, I blame the electorate because if people were paying attention Obama should have lost badly. When you have an incumbent who is this bad and an opponent who at worst is going to continue the status quo, it’s really hard to figure out the logic of not voting for the status quo.

And that’s what it came down to: Obama unencumbered and Romney the status quo. Nothing else.

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:34 PM

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:21 PM

Then start now. Romney didn’t even try. Nor did McCain. Nor does anybody in the GOP. That’s the point. We keep talking about how liberals have entrenched themselves do solidly and awesomely that it almost becomes an excuse for never waging a campaign on these terms. Besides, the liberal dominion is not nearly as deep or unrootable as we often imagine. One man or woman in one election cycle taking the fight to them and putting them on the defensive (as Bill Whittle so lucidly speechified recently) could change the entire paradigm of the national political culture. Believe it. In this context, Romney was bad beyond words.

rrpjr on November 28, 2012 at 6:34 PM

I’d like to point out that Paul Ryan did not help the ticket in any way. Not geographically, not electorally, not socially, not with his Catholic faith. VP’s are suppose to fill in the voids found in the nominees portfolio. Paul Ryan brought nothing.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Who do you think would have made an impact? Rubio? I can’t really think of anyone else who could have given him a bounce. Maybe we could have won FL and lessened the embarrassment of this loss.

John_Locke on November 28, 2012 at 6:34 PM

Mitt could perhaps have done better if Palin hadn’t prolonged the GOP primary and if the more strident members of her cult hadn’t poisoned so many minds against Romney, who was not just a good candidate but a terrific candidate. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying Palin was entirely to blame. Mitt might still have lost even if she hadn’t prolonged the GOP Primary and even if the Cult hadn’t been working overtime against him.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Ah Yes. Romney lost because of Palin, and Palin supporters.

What stage of grief are you at?

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:35 PM

Not even worthy of a response.

Dunedainn on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Because you don’t have one. Enjoy Obamacare. Hope you don’t get sick.

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:35 PM

They finally finished counting the votes and according to Jim Geraghty, Romney now has half a million more votes than McCain. I honestly do not think that any of the candidates would have done any better..

LOL. Romney — that hyper-electable genius we were told HAD to be the nominee because only he had any chance at all to beat Obama — loses to a president who has engineered double-digit unemployment, rammed throught the unpopular “stimulus” and ObamaCare, rising prices and practically zero economic growth for the past four years, and then it’s “NOBODY COULD HAVE WON AGAINST OBAMA!!!!” ANd then the ‘bots hang their hats on the fact that Romney garnered a relatively few more votes than McCain, when McCain was running against Chicago Jesus Lightworker who had no record to attack. That’s pathetic.

and I do not understand the need of pundits to beat up on Romney or his campaign after the fact. It would be nice just once if conservatives could refrain from the usual back stabbing. Let it go. So the guy does not want to complain about the campaign…who cares at this point?

Terrye on November 28, 2012 at 5:26 PM

Oh, come on. How much b1tching and moaning have we had to hear over the past four years about how Palin was a millstone around McCain’s neck?

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:36 PM

Dunedainn on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

.
To quote a famous musician…….

“If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.”

You need the the Self-immolation room, 2 doors down on the left.

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:36 PM

Who do you think would have made an impact? Rubio? I can’t really think of anyone else who could have given him a bounce. Maybe we could have won FL and lessened the embarrassment of this loss.

John_Locke on November 28, 2012 at 6:34 PM

What did Ryan bring to the ticket? I’ve asked time and time again, but get no response. I like Ryan, but seriously he didn’t help the ticket.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Mitt could perhaps have done better if Palin hadn’t prolonged the GOP primary

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:29 PM

No, Mitt could have perhaps done better if he and his minions didn’t treat Palin and the TP as if they were syphilitic hunchbacks on parole. Palin didn’t prolong the primaries; the obvious weaknesses of Mitt Romney as a candidate prolonged them.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Mitt could perhaps have done better if Palin hadn’t prolonged the GOP primary and if the more strident members of her cult hadn’t poisoned so many minds against Romney, who was not just a good candidate but a terrific candidate. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying Palin was entirely to blame. Mitt might still have lost even if she hadn’t prolonged the GOP Primary and even if the Cult hadn’t been working overtime against him.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Maybe if Romney hadn’t shut out Sarah Palin and the TeaParty he might have had a chance, but it seems his ego got in the way and couldn’t take the chance to be upstaged.

On second thought I’m glad she stayed out and didn’t tarnish her image with Romney’s defeat..:)

idesign on November 28, 2012 at 6:40 PM

I’d like to point out that Paul Ryan did not help the ticket in any way. Not geographically, not electorally, not socially, not with his Catholic faith. VP’s are suppose to fill in the voids found in the nominees portfolio. Paul Ryan brought nothing. portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:32 PM

Ryan was picked to help Mitt govern and to convince people like you what I already knew: Romney would govern as a fiscal conservative to the extent possible. Romney could have satisified The Cult and picked Palin, but he wanted to win and he certainly wanted to get more than 40% of the vote.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:40 PM

Then start now. Romney didn’t even try. Nor did McCain. Nor does anybody in the GOP. That’s the point. We keep talking about how liberals have entrenched themselves do solidly and awesomely that it almost becomes an excuse for never waging a campaign on these terms. Besides, the liberal dominion is not nearly as deep or unrootable as we often imagine. One man or woman in one election cycle taking the fight to them and putting them on the defensive (as Bill Whittle so lucidly speechified recently) could change the entire paradigm of the national political culture. Believe it. In this context, Romney was bad beyond words.

rrpjr on November 28, 2012 at 6:34 PM

Alright. What is being done? I’ve been posting in the evening QOTD thread about a group that’s trying to get boycotts together of MSDNC and other various outlets. We have to start somewhere. I think two people were interested.

I’d recommend changing your spending habits. Watch who you give clicks to on the internet, who you’re buying from, what movies you spend money on.

Start getting involved and set up groups. The TEA Party was great. What happened to them? Why can’t that happen again?

I am not arguing a defense for the GOP. Far from it. Before the election I was talking about still cleaning out the GOP or looking into viable third parties even if Romney won.

My argument has always been do we want to do this the hard way or the easier way? It is now the hard way. That’s fine, but it was unnecessary.

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:41 PM

Ryan was picked to help Mitt govern and to convince people like you what I already knew: Romney would govern as a fiscal conservative to the extent possible. Romney could have satisified The Cult and picked Palin, but he wanted to win and he certainly wanted to get more than 40% of the vote.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:40 PM

Ryan was thrown out there as a sop to TP-sympathizing types, and he didn’t move the needle at all. It was supposed to be some kind of game-changer, and it flopped.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:42 PM

Oh, come on. How much b1tching and moaning have we had to hear over the past four years about how Palin was a millstone around McCain’s neck?

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:36 PM

We’re still hearing it today.

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:42 PM

No, Mitt could have perhaps done better if he and his minions didn’t treat Palin and the TP as if they were syphilitic hunchbacks on parole. Palin didn’t prolong the primaries; the obvious weaknesses of Mitt Romney as a candidate prolonged them.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:38 PM

75% of primary voters wanted someone other than Romney.

It’s pretty simple to see right there that it wasn’t just “Conservatives” who didn’t want Romney.

Romney came in 3rd place to John McCain and Mike Huckabee in 2008 for goodness sakes.

The GOP hierarchy maneuvered Romney in for ’12, and made darn sure to not pull the punches on the other candidates.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:42 PM

Ryan was thrown out there as a sop to TP-sympathizing types, and he didn’t move the needle at all. It was supposed to be some kind of game-changer, and it flopped.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:42 PM

.
The electorate was subdued by the… Biden Mystique….

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:46 PM

The “green-room crowd” assured us Romney wouldn’t get beat on nuts-and-bolts stuff; that was one of the biggest reasons to nominate him.

Romney’s managerial skills are what won me over to believe he would beat Obama. I was wrong and want to know who to blame (other than my poor judgment, of course).

BTW, don’t blame Ryan. He was the best person involved in the campaign with real solutions to our nation’s problems.

HellCat on November 28, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Ryan was picked to help Mitt govern and to convince people like you what I already knew: Romney would govern as a fiscal conservative to the extent possible. Romney could have satisified The Cult and picked Palin, but he wanted to win and he certainly wanted to get more than 40% of the vote.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:40 PM

Do you know what all successful Presidential tickets have in common?

THEY ARE ABLE TO WIN THEIR HOME STATES. THEY ARE ABLE TO WIN STATES THEY REPRESENTED.

Romney: Didn’t win Michigan. Didn’t win Massachusetts. Didn’t win New Hampshire. Didn’t win any state bordering Massachusetts.

Ryan: Didn’t win Wisconsin. Didn’t win his any state bordering Wisconsin.

2 Northeast candidates on the same ticket was a complete failure to demonstrate an understanding of the electorate, or the voters they represented.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:47 PM

The electorate was subdued by the… Biden Mystique….

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:46 PM

No, they failed to fall under the spell of that Powerful Ryan Charisma that seems to affect only the punditocracy.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

Maybe if Romney hadn’t shut out Sarah Palin and the TeaParty he might have had a chance, but it seems his ego got in the way and couldn’t take the chance to be upstaged.

On second thought I’m glad she stayed out and didn’t tarnish her image with Romney’s defeat..:)

idesign on November 28, 2012 at 6:40 PM

I think Romney should have defended Palin regarding her claim of being blood libeled – as I did – because the blood libel was an outrageous and unfair attack upon her. As for giving Palin a prominent place at the Convention or in the campaign the problem is that Palin is toxic and would have hurt more than helped.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

BTW, don’t blame Ryan. He was the best person involved in the campaign with real solutions to our nation’s problems.

HellCat on November 28, 2012 at 6:46 PM

I’m not blaming Ryan. He is a great member of the House. I’m saying he didn’t help the Romney ticket. He didn’t wring in any demographic that he needed.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:49 PM

Do you know what all successful Presidential tickets have in common?

THEY ARE ABLE TO WIN THEIR HOME STATES. THEY ARE ABLE TO WIN STATES THEY REPRESENTED.

Romney: Didn’t win Michigan. Didn’t win Massachusetts. Didn’t win New Hampshire. Didn’t win any state bordering Massachusetts.

Ryan: Didn’t win Wisconsin. Didn’t win his any state bordering Wisconsin.

2 Northeast candidates on the same ticket was a complete failure to demonstrate an understanding of the electorate, or the voters they represented.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:47 PM

That sums it up nicely.

SparkPlug on November 28, 2012 at 6:50 PM

As for giving Palin a prominent place at the Convention or in the campaign the problem is that Palin is toxic and would have hurt more than helped.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

Will Mitt be at the 2016 convention? I’m sure he’ll be the keynote speaker/

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:50 PM

It was the “green-room crowd” that insisted Romney would be, and had to be, nominated because he was the only guy in the GOP field who was sufficiently well funded, well organized, and moderate to give Obama problems in a general election.

Did it ever occur to a bunch of capable candidates had chosen to sit out precisely because of the the way Romney team managed to subvert the process and buy the establishment? All were left were a bunch of third string candidates who ran to increase their profiles and all of them together almost managed to stop Romney, the biggest spender on right.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 6:51 PM

As for giving Palin a prominent place at the Convention or in the campaign the problem is that Palin is toxic and would have hurt more than helped.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

Here’s some sycophant still bleating on about the perfection of Mr Electable who blew an eminently winnable election, and calling Palin “toxic”? LOL Brilliant strategy your guy had there. Christie really fired ‘em up for Mitt!!!! And he’s non-toxic!!!!

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:51 PM

The reason everyone else, including Herman Cain, did a stint as a frontrunner is because so many grassroots Republicans were loath to nominate the architect of RomneyCare. Eventually he simply outspent and out-organized the competition, and that was that. But let’s not use his own base’s ambivalence towards him for most of the campaign as some sort of testament to his resilience.

It is true the base did not accept Romney until he chose Ryan. But he did not just get the nomination because he outspent and out organized. Ron Paul spent his time beating up everyone except Romney. The RINO spinmasters did the same, and laid off Paul. Ditto MSM. Perry then strangely shot himself in the foot near the end with his immigration speech. It worked so well for Perry, Newt did the same thing sluicing votes to Romney. It was similar to the McCain nomination strategy. Romney can credit Paul, Perry, Newt for playing the end run. There were also a couple place holders to dilute the vote. Huntsman, and Cain. Cain went into the primary with a documented mistress. Did he not know he was a paper tiger?. Who was a sincere contender, who the snake, who the fool?

The net result of the primary was to limit Romney’s exposure so Obama could stage Romney’s image. They hurt him by helping him

What does it say that no one knew Romney until the first Obama debate. Shame

I dont blame Romney’s guy, unless he was in on the primary debate setup

But having been involved in three presidential races, two of which we won closely and one that we lost fairly closely, I know enough to know that we weren’t brilliant because Florida went our way in 2000 or enough Ohioans stuck with us in 2004. Nor are we idiots because we came a little more than 320,000 votes short of winning the electoral college in 2012.

This isnt anything to sneeze at. Ron Paul made his sad farewell, but was he happy he helped diminish Romney’s chances? Probably thinks he saved the US from Santorum. I still ultimately blame the RINOs who cultivated the whole stupidity

I don’t blame Romney except for not scraping up the missing votes of people who needed to be convinced loosening screws on business would really get them jobs. He had a huge handicap going in.

I also blame Christie who helped swing the undecided Obama voters back to vote for Obama a second time

entagor on November 28, 2012 at 6:51 PM

Will Mitt be at the 2016 convention? I’m sure he’ll be the keynote speaker/

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:50 PM

You know what? I’m so disgusted with the GOP right now, I hope that by 2016 they’re so insignificant they’ll have to hold their “convention” in the Tropicana Lounge of the Podunkville Holiday Inn.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:53 PM

As for giving Palin a prominent place at the Convention or in the campaign the problem is that Palin is toxic and would have hurt more than helped.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

Tell that to Cruz, Fisher, Flake, Hatch and the House candidates Palin indorsed..:)

idesign on November 28, 2012 at 6:54 PM

No, they failed to fall under the spell of that Powerful Ryan Charisma that seems to affect only the punditocracy.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

.
ahh, but team Romney DID win back white 18-29 year olds…. so racism aside…maybe we’re being a little too hard on the wonky Beav , eh wally?
.
No- its all about being cool, bro…. and we ain’tgot none.

Get with it man…the majority of the American voting populace is dumbfeck stupid. Half of them probably think they were voting for JZ and Springsteen. Policy is overrated.

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:55 PM

Oh, come on. How much b1tching and moaning have we had to hear over the past four years about how Palin was a millstone around McCain’s neck?

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:36 PM

We’re still hearing it today.

kim roy on November 28, 2012 at 6:42 PM

SparkPlug on November 28, 2012 at 6:55 PM

What did Ryan bring to the ticket? I’ve asked time and time again, but get no response. I like Ryan, but seriously he didn’t help the ticket.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:38 PM

Yeah, I was actually pretty unimpressed with him in the VP debate, I really expected him to be more passionate and coherent.

I just wonder if we could have nominated someone else for a real benefit.

John_Locke on November 28, 2012 at 6:55 PM

Palin is toxic, granted her endorsements help sway voters toward those she favors and they win, but she is still toxic I tell you.

SparkPlug on November 28, 2012 at 6:58 PM

Palin “toxic”? LOL Brilliant strategy your guy had there.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:51 PM

.
You know he means “Media” toxic. And Palin should get some credit for not volunteering to be- another shiny object for the socialist propaganda media squirrel machine.

Fluke v. Palin ?
Oy vey.

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:59 PM

What did Ryan bring to the ticket? I’ve asked time and time again, but get no response. I like Ryan, but seriously he didn’t help the ticket.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:38 PM

With out Ryan we couldn’t have said lets get some R&R.

With a catchy phrase like that who needs votes.

SparkPlug on November 28, 2012 at 7:00 PM

Yeah, I was actually pretty unimpressed with him in the VP debate, I really expected him to be more passionate and coherent.

I just wonder if we could have nominated someone else for a real benefit.

John_Locke on November 28, 2012 at 6:55 PM

Biden’s disgusting and obnoxious debating distracted alot from Ryan. He is a very smart person.

I think Romney misused Ryan. Much the same way McCain misused Palin.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 7:01 PM

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:48 PM

Hm. You used to be distinguishable from bluegill. Oh well.

wolfsDad on November 28, 2012 at 7:05 PM

Fluke v. Palin ?
Oy vey.

FlaMurph on November 28, 2012 at 6:59 PM

If you don’t understand the difference, you’re brain dead….

idesign on November 28, 2012 at 7:06 PM

It doesn’t matter what we call ourselves, and we all know here, that conservatives and republicans and right of center and even to a small extent the “RINOS” all are individualist who are united in the fact that they don’t believe in socialism, communism, if not totally against big government, against the flaws of big government, our name doesn’t matter, the media can spoil it in the matter of a few weeks.

Tea Partiers are racists. HUH? remember that? Occupiers good. Tea Partiers Scaring Mrs. Pelosi because she remember the sixties/seventies and the violence! It doesn’t matter what we call ourselves, the media will smear it.

We have to get the televisions off these channels and stop paying the cable bill. Protest the MTV on your cable tv, no celebrity values programs idolizing idiots. Use the parental controls to start, but tell your community cable company that parents should get a discount for turning off channels. Those programs are propped up when you pay the cable bill.

You can also write to the sponsors of programs and tell them you hope they will advertise on programs that are more pro traditional America, and pro the greatness of our country. And tell them, you don’t want to see illegal drug use idolized for teens on television.

Get some ideas and talk with your friends. If anyone knows how I get my elderly mother to give up some of these crazy programs I would like to hear it. She likes Big Brother…sounds wholesome enough, maybe it’s Ayn Rand! but no, its Tra-ash!

Fleuries on November 28, 2012 at 7:19 PM

Those blaming Palin, grow up. This is all on Romney.

Faramir on November 28, 2012 at 7:19 PM

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 7:01 PM

Palin held her won during debate with Biden. Ryan was utterly smashed. Palin brought in a huge swing toward Mccain which only lost because of Lehmanns Brothers collapse but Ryan barely moved the needle. Yet, Palin is the one blamed for Mccain’s loss whereas Ryan… nobody says anything about it. Doesn’t that tell you something? Ryan is an establishment kiddo. He talks good game but he always votes one with the Boehner. Palin had to be destroyed by the establishment but Ryan is one of them. Remember that when you praise Ryan.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Just a quick note. Those making 20k -50k also consider themselves part of the middle class. Nobody likes to think of themselves as poor. And those people Mitt didn’t carry.

unseen on November 28, 2012 at 7:22 PM

Ryan was picked to help Mitt govern and to convince people like you what I already knew: Romney would govern as a fiscal conservative to the extent possible. Romney could have satisified The Cult and picked Palin, but he wanted to win and he certainly wanted to get more than 40% of the vote.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:40 PM

I am getting pretty sick of Palin and her idiocy. Stupid candidates like her are bad for the Republican image. Hate to see people like her and Christine O’Donnell and Todd Akin and Sharron Angle as the face of the GOP and as the representatives of conservatives. Worse than Palin herself are the idiots who worship her and make excuses for her incompetence at every turn. 99% of the people at this site who do nothing but trash Romney and Paul Ryan are Sarah Palin cultists. These people never have anything to offer but complaints about any candidate not named Palin. They are a waste of time.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:22 PM

Romney adviser, who was paid in advance, say he is happy with the results. Surprise. Isn’t there a way to link pay to these people on the results? I thought Romney was an awesome negotiator and amazingly great CEO!

astonerii on November 28, 2012 at 7:24 PM

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:22 PM

It’s baaaaaaaaackk.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 7:24 PM

I thought Romney was an awesome negotiator and amazingly great CEO!

astonerii on November 28, 2012 at 7:24 PM

Romney paid twice as much for half the staff of the Obama Campaign.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Romney got more votes than Cruz in Texas. Hmm…

In fact, Romney did better than most of the Republican Senate candidates.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:26 PM

Romney paid twice as much for half the staff of the Obama Campaign.

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 7:25 PM

I hear he also paid 4 times the going rate for TV commercials.

astonerii on November 28, 2012 at 7:27 PM

How many lost campaigns has Stevens run?

carolt2 on November 28, 2012 at 7:30 PM

I thought Romney was an awesome negotiator and amazingly great CEO!
astonerii on November 28, 2012 at 7:24 PM

Romney paid twice as much for half the staff of the Obama Campaign. portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Romney likes working people. Most of Obama’s workers were already getting a cheque from the state.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 7:31 PM

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:20 PM

You are an idiot but you know that..:)

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 7:31 PM

Oh yes, that’s right bluegill, we are all Palin worshipers and Romney haters. Why not throw in the fact we hate Mormoms too. Frankly I am ambivalent about Palin, but I know enough only someone with the intellectual honesty of Michael Moore would try to blame Palin for Romney’s epic fail.

Faramir on November 28, 2012 at 7:34 PM

Romney got more votes than Cruz in Texas. Hmm…

In fact, Romney did better than most of the Republican Senate candidates.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:26 PM

And your golden boy still lost. Because Palin or something.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:35 PM

Yet, Palin is the one blamed for Mccain’s loss

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:20 PM

Palin further sullied the Republican brand with her shallowness, incompetence and lack of preparedness. She became a walking joke, and by the end of the 2008 campaign, even many conservatives couldn’t help but cringe every time she appeared on tv. Palin’s damage to our party’s image can’t be measured in just a few vote totals.

No more joke candidates like Palin, Christine O’Donnell, Sharron Angle, Todd Akin, Donald Trump, etc.

Enough is enough, aready. We have excellent conservative governors in Jindal, Walker, Pence, McDonnell, etc. I want to see those kinds of people get more attention… not the Sarah Palins and whatever her latest whine of the week is.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

How many lost campaigns has Stevens run?

carolt2 on November 28, 2012 at 7:30 PM

…vs. how many campaigns? Rush posited today that Democrats embrace their failures while Republicans can’t wait to get rid of them. That’s clearly not true of campaign staff management.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Ah Yes. Romney lost because of Palin, and Palin supporters.

What stage of grief are you at?

portlandon on November 28, 2012 at 6:35 PM

I’m fine, thank you for asking. I didn’t cost us the election. Relax. I said might have. OTOH, your inability to grasp reality and support a fine man might not have affected the result.

Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Speaking of Palin’s toxicity, much of Palin smears (the Game Change memo was authored by Jones who worked for Romney) were because of Romney. That is how he plays. She got ahead of him, so he lets his operatives smear her. So it’s funny to see his trolls complain that she’s toxic when they were the major contributors about the lies in the media about her.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

He was part of the worst presidential campaign team in modern memory. Of course he will deny any wrongdoing in the slim hope he will ever see employment as a political consultant ever again.

Norwegian on November 28, 2012 at 5:20 PM

Really? Romney’s campaign team sucked, but worst in modern memory is total BS, unless your memory is limited to a year. Steve Schmidt anyone?

McCain’s campaign looked like it was run by troglodytes compared to Romney.

John_Locke on November 28, 2012 at 5:22 PM

I worked both campaigns. Trust me the McCain campaign was the utter joke. Romney campaign had the transition team ready to go.

What we failed to do was gotv. The Dems’ ground game is superior..they never closed offices in swing states. And they are not closed now. As I type this, they are registering ‘coming to age voters’ We do nothing

Redford on November 28, 2012 at 7:38 PM

Unprovable. What can be proven is that the electable juggernaut with his top-shelf organization and business genius lost to the Worst President in US History. The “green room crowd” is discredited forever.

ddrintn on November 28, 2012 at 6:27 PM

Yup. Well said.

Irritable Pundit on November 28, 2012 at 7:38 PM

Enough is enough, aready. We have excellent conservative governors in Jindal, Walker, Pence, McDonnell, etc. I want to see those kinds of people get more attention… not the Sarah Palins and whatever her latest whine of the week is.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Mark my words, folks: The next “rising star” of ye Grande Ole Party will be just a big a disappointment as John Boehner and Eric Cantor and the rest of them have been.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:39 PM

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 7:31 PM

Ah insults instead of arguments. Don’t expect better from you.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:39 PM

Mark my words, folks: The next “rising star” of ye Grande Ole Party

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:39 PM

You better hope so. All you like to do is complain, so at least it would keep you busy.

Unlike some of you, however, I believe we have an excellent field of Republican governors.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:41 PM

Redford on November 28, 2012 at 7:38 PM

Yes, the guys who plan for transition but not for GOTV are an excellent team. Yippe!!!

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:42 PM

In the debates and in sweeping rallies across the country, Romney captured the imagination of millions of Americans.

That might be true, AP. It’s just that, even if it is, his movement needed to be in the tens of millions or hundreds of millions.

Ron Paul is also wildly popular, what with the millions.

Also Rebecca Black.

Axe on November 28, 2012 at 7:43 PM

So it’s funny to see his trolls complain that she’s toxic when they were the major contributors about the lies in the media about her.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

Oh, look. Another Palin cultist bashing Romney and Ryan. Attacking any candidate not named Palin is all they do.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:44 PM

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:39 PM

Can’t believe after the dam squib of Paul Ryan people still fall for Jindal, Walker etc. They maybe good people but they have not demonstrated any ability to attract crowds on national level. They haven’t shown that they can go toe to toe with Hillary.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:45 PM

Those blaming Palin, grow up. This is all on Romney.

Faramir on November 28, 2012 at 7:19 PM

Wait — did Palin bring down Romney’s campaign too? I’ve gotten confused by the thread.

SHE MUST BE STOPPED!

Axe on November 28, 2012 at 7:47 PM

You better hope so. All you like to do is complain, so at least it would keep you busy.

Unlike some of you, however, I believe we have an excellent field of Republican governors.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:41 PM

Oh, look. Another Palin cultist bashing Romney and Ryan. Attacking any candidate not named Palin is all they do.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:44 PM

Oh, I like to complain? That’s rich coming from a one-trick palin-bashing pony. At least I complain about a wide variety of issues and candidates. If your Palin bashing isn’t “complaining,” I don’t know how else to describe it.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:47 PM

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:39 PM

It is okay for you to dish them out but no one else..What you said was stupid and off the rail loser..:)

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Can’t believe after the dam squib of Paul Ryan people still fall for Jindal, Walker etc. They maybe good people but they have not demonstrated any ability to attract crowds on national level. They haven’t shown that they can go toe to toe with Hillary.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:45 PM

I think Romney’s a good person. But Jindal, Walker, and Pence have done no more to prove to me that they’re conservative than Romney has. Add to that that I’ve completely lost my faith in the GOP as a vehicle of conservatism, and things are looking pretty bleak.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Wait — did Palin bring down Romney’s campaign too? I’ve gotten confused by the thread.

SHE MUST BE STOPPED!

Axe on November 28, 2012 at 7:47 PM

You did not seriously think that Romney could contend with the will of Palin? There are none who can. Against the power of Sarah Palin, there can be no victory. We must join with her, Axe. We must join with Palin. It would be wise, my friend. /

sharrukin on November 28, 2012 at 7:54 PM

There are many places to find votes. Some of it is converting the other party’s people, so you go after the loosely attached regular voter. The other place to find votes is irregular voters. We need to turn out the irregular voter. Meaning we need to identify the likely irregular Republican voter and figure out what he/she wants from a politician. We should be doing absolutely miraculous microtargeting with the volume of consumer data that exists these days. We have the money. The technology exists. Some think tank needs to go after this pronto.

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 7:57 PM

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 7:48 PM

Same with you idiot. You never stop Palin bashing trolls here but some Palinista dare say one thing against the beloved establishment types out come the claws. By the way, did your guy win in 2012? :)

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:57 PM

I like Paul Ryan. He is about the most moderate choice I could find acceptable.

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 7:58 PM

Republicans are still buying the nonsense that America is a center-right country despite all the facts to the contrary including that the left controls the media, academia, the entertainment industry and hence the culture. I thought Romney would win because I did not think Obama would be able to get out his constituency, given that his presidency has been a miserable failure.
Mitt could perhaps have done better if Palin hadn’t prolonged the GOP primary and if the more strident members of her cult hadn’t poisoned so many minds against Romney, who was not just a good candidate but a terrific candidate. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying Palin was entirely to blame. Mitt might still have lost even if she hadn’t prolonged the GOP Primary and even if the Cult hadn’t been working overtime against him.
Basilsbest on November 28, 2012 at 6:29 PM

Wow, apparently locking Palin out of the convention wasn’t enough. Nutters are actually blaming Palin. And please, sugaring your kooky theory with “perhaps’” and “might haves” is just dishonest. Own up to it. Be proud of your PDS!

Dongemaharu on November 28, 2012 at 7:59 PM

We have excellent conservative governors in Jindal, Walker, Pence, McDonnell, etc. I want to see those kinds of people get more attention… not the Sarah Palins and whatever her latest whine of the week is.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 7:37 PM

There is room for all in a primary.

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:00 PM

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Agree they are more conservative but we have to see how they play on the national scene before coronating them. Will they sell out to the establishment or will they stay strong? Ryan, Rubio and Christie have been disappointments and so I am extra careful about all these new wannabes.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 8:00 PM

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:39 PM

It is okay for you to dish them out but no one else..What you said was stupid and off the rail loser..:)

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 7:48 PM

I think I will take his advice over yours. You were telling us how people won’t stay home and they did, and you were telling us how Romney was going to win. As I recall that didn’t happen either. Your track record leaves a lot to be desired.

sharrukin on November 28, 2012 at 8:01 PM

Better than McCain’s strategists who turned around and blamed the VP candidate.

Gelsomina on November 28, 2012 at 8:02 PM

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 7:49 PM

Agree they are more conservative but we have to see how they play on the national scene before coronating them. Will they sell out to the establishment or will they stay strong? Ryan, Rubio and Christie have been disappointments and so I am extra careful about all these new wannabes.

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 8:00 PM

Lemme show you something here, Pro:

1 1 2 3 5 8 13 21 34 55 89

Can you guess what the next number is? (HINT: It’s a fibbonaci pattern)

There is absolutely ZERO reason to believe at this point that the next conservative standard bearer will come from the GOP. None. The only thing that could possibly make you believe in a conservative GOP is the same kind of wishful thinking that’s seen Barack Obama elected twice during an absolutely shitty economy.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:07 PM

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:07 PM

What’s the point of the math problem?

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:09 PM

Top Romney strategist: No regrets, baby…I got paid anyway! Seeya around, suckas!

Dr. ZhivBlago on November 28, 2012 at 8:10 PM

what do you call someone who is jealous of Sarah in spanish?

…..bluegillo

renalin on November 28, 2012 at 8:11 PM

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 7:57 PM

How long is it before Allah B-slaps you fool??..:)

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 8:11 PM

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:07 PM

What’s the point of the math problem?

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:09 PM

It’s a pattern, Fired. I believe the GOP has less than no hope of ever being conservative again because of the apparatchiks’ past behavior. You can tell what will come by what has come before, just like a Fibbonaci sequence.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:12 PM

There is absolutely ZERO reason to believe at this point that the next conservative standard bearer will come from the GOP. None.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:07 PM

That’s bad logic. There is some non-zero chance that a future leader would come from each of the Republican Party, the Democratic Party, the Libertarian Party, the Green Party, or no party at all. The odds are also greater that a conservative leader would come from the libertarian or republican parties than the democratic or green parties. The odds may not be good, but they are of course higher than zero.

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:13 PM

Dire Straits on November 28, 2012 at 8:11 PM

He has been b*tch slapped by reality himself:) I see that you are not rational and there’s no point in replying you. Keep on with you trolling. :)

promachus on November 28, 2012 at 8:15 PM

That’s bad logic. There is some non-zero chance that a future leader would come from each of the Republican Party, the Democratic Party, the Libertarian Party, the Green Party, or no party at all. The odds are also greater that a conservative leader would come from the libertarian or republican parties than the democratic or green parties. The odds may not be good, but they are of course higher than zero.

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:13 PM

Anything is possible. The world could end in three weeks in re: the Mayan donut callendar. Do you realistically think it’s going to happen just because there is technically a non-zero chance that it will?

The GOP is accepting the premise that conservatism failed when you know as well as I do that they did not run a conservative presidential candidate this cycle. They, along with a lot of armchair pundits, are misdiagnosing the problem. We won’t solve it if we don’t accurately name it first.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:16 PM

You can tell what will come by what has come before, just like a Fibbonaci sequence.

gryphon202 on November 28, 2012 at 8:12 PM

Ah. I get it now. Was thinking it was an arbitrary competence test and I don’t like smarty-pantses. ;)

alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:18 PM

There is room for all in a primary.
alwaysfiredup on November 28, 2012 at 8:00 PM

True. Maybe we do need to have Sarah Palin run in the primaries and fall flat on her face once again in a more spectacular fashion than did similarly unprepared candidates like Rick Perry and Herman Cain. Maybe that would once and for all end the silly fascination we have with clownish joke politicians. Still, I doubt she would put herself out there like that. Heck, she hasn’t even been able to take part in challenging interview situations in the last few years.

bluegill on November 28, 2012 at 8:18 PM

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