"The others may not be toast but they're certainly in the toaster"

Yes, they say, it would have been nice if one of the other Republican candidates had been able to make a stronger case against Romney. But, in their view, the missteps of the potential alternatives have been too severe, the holes in their credibility too gaping.

“The others may not quite be toast,” Democratic strategist Chris Lehane told The Hill. “But they’re certainly in the toaster, the dial is turned up to nine, and there is smoke coming out.”

“Oh, Democrats would love to get Michele Bachmann, of course!” said Democratic pollster Mark Mellman, who is also a columnist for The Hill. “I’m sure there are lots of Democrats who would like to run against Herman Cain. But all of them, including Romney, have fundamental weaknesses.”…

Romney has been the target of 12 news releases from the Democratic National Committee since the start of October against two for businessman Herman Cain and one for Perry. During the same period, the group’s blog has featured 36 posts tagged with Romney’s name against six for Cain and four for Perry.