That brought the house down in Charlotte, and tears to many an eye, not always for the same reason (see Reince Priebus, below.)
Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney accomplished one big thing last week in Tampa: the Republican National Convention rallied a once-wary GOP base back to his candidacy. But the immediate effect on the broader electorate was negligible, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.Romney fav/unfav 40/47 after convention, Obama 51/45. That's a very modest improvement for Romney compared to a week ago (35/51), but puts him where he was last month. With Republicans, the RNC erased the Todd Akin stain, but did nothing to harm Obama.
Romney Gets No Bounce From Last Week's GOP ConventionNate Cohn:
Mitt Romney received no convention bounce, based on Gallup Daily tracking before (47%) and after (46%) last week's Republican National Convention. He joins John Kerry and George McGovern as nominees who did not get a bounce.
But perhaps this is the simplest test: in the absence of the Republican National Convention, would anyone interpret these polls as signs pointing toward the possibility of recent movement in Romney’s direction? I wouldn't, and Nate Silver’s model seems to agree: The recent movement in the “Now-cast” is indistinguishable from similar bumps and valleys over the last few months. In the absence of better data, the responsible position is that it's unclear whether Romney received a bounce, since the evidence doesn’t preclude the possibility that other national surveys might find Romney making gains. But if I had to leave uncertainty aside and make a yes/no call based on the recent polls, I’d say that any Romney bounce was difficult to discern, at best.In any case, don't pay too much attention to the polls for the next week. And don't let people tell you a one point move means anything.
The online markets were not impressed with the RNC. Obama actually gained since the start last Tuesday (58.4 for Intrade, IEM is 65.2), and Nate Silver's forecast is 74.8, also up from last week. Hard to make the case for a Romney bounce.
Julian Castro at the DNC via First Read:
'Now, like many of you, I watched last week's Republican Convention. They told a few stories of individual success...we all celebrate individual success. But the question is: how do we multiply that success? The answer is President Barack Obama...Mitt Romney, quite simply, doesn't get it. A few months ago he visited a university in Ohio and gave the students there a little entrepreneurial advice. 'Start a business,' he said. But how? 'Borrow money if you have to from your parents,' he told them. Gee -- why didn't I think of that?'...
We all understand that freedom isn't free. What Romney and Ryan don't understand is that neither is opportunity. We have to invest in it. Republicans tell us that if the most prosperous among us do even better, that somehow the rest of us will too. Folks...we've heard that before. First they called it 'trickle-down.' Then 'supply side.' Now it's 'Romney/Ryan.' Or is it 'Ryan/Romney'? Either way, their theory has been tested. It failed. Our economy failed. The middle class paid the price. Your family paid the price. Mitt Romney just doesn't get it.'
The Detroit car companies all reported double-digit increases in sales for the month compared with the same period a year ago. And the big Japanese carmakers continued to rebound from supply shortages last year to post substantial year-over-year sales gains.Still, analysts expect ~150K for August's Friday report, not much different than last month. Doesn't matter what it is from one perspective; Romney would say it sucked if it were 150 million.
To hear Republicans on the campaign trail, the United States could not have elected a more left-wing president than Barack Obama, one more hostile to business or more eager to expand government power. Left-wing Democrats, I’m sure, would disagree. If they had their druthers, they would probably make a more liberal, more pro-big government choice. Somebody, perhaps, like Richard Nixon.
With a couple months to go before this November’s election, we can get a rough idea of what Obama’s election-year record will look like by measuring the 12 months ended on July 31 (which is the most recent month for which we have jobs data). In that year, the economy added about 1.8 million jobs, or an average of 153,000 jobs a month. Real weekly wages rose by 0.6 percent. The S&P 500 rose from 1,292 to 1,379.
All this factoring, however, perpetuates the myth of the imperial president. It not only assumes that everything that’s happened in the economy is a result of the president’s policies; it assumes that lawmakers quickly and smoothly bend to the president’s will, translating his preferences into policy. But no one who has spent time in Washington during these past few years would use the words “quickly and smoothly” to describe the workings of the U.S. Congress.
Ian Reifowitz rebuts charges that Obama is a divider:
And yet Obama’s ideas on American national identity are a subtle shift rather than a radical change. During the culture wars of the 1990s, heated debates occurred over how we define our national narrative. Conservatives and radical multiculturalists stood at opposite extremes, one demanding what historian Gary Nash called “Ozzie and Harriet patriotism” while the other essentially rejected identifying with a broader American community.
Obama has sought a middle ground, a way out of those divisive debates, by talking continually about a more inclusive national identity.