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It looks like the right is blaming Mitt Romney for the resounding defeat of the Republican Party in the national elections. But the truth is, Mitt was not the problem. The right wing money machine had a number of candidates they could get behind in the Republican primary. They chose Mitt and they chose the message. Mitt did everything he was supposed to do and said everything he was supposed to say. And he probably did it better than any of the other Republican candidates would have.

The mistake the right-wing billionaires made is that they thought they could get a large portion of white voters to identify with Mitt and to identify with the message Mitt was ordered to deliver. Boy, were they wrong. The message they crafted was that America was "taken from" Americans, hence the the "Take Back America" slogan. And of course the Americans it was taken from was supposed to be white Americans.  The message was, "we have a black President because black and latino Americans put him there and so, come on white America, let's take it back."  What doomed this strategy wasn't that blacks and latinos  rejected it and rejected Mitt, they were never the target of the message and were expected to reject it. What doomed this strategy was that almost half of white voters also rejected it.  Half of "white America" identified more closely with Barack Obama and his message than they did with Mitt Romney and the right wing message.  The right wing billionaires crafted a message that was intended to alienate blacks and latinos but was expected to deliver to the Republican party 60% or more of the white vote. It didn't. They chose the message, they chose the candidate, and they chose wrong.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I've been saying the same thing for a while (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JeffW, asindc, Gooserock, fumie

    Romney was the best they had-- and that includes people who didn't run this cycle.

    Bottom line: Republican policies are bad for the country. And the country has started to understand that. The only way they can be sold is through lies. But after all this time, the lies are starting to wear thin.

    "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

    by Demi Moaned on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 10:35:05 AM PST

    •  Oh I Think They Have Much Better Candidates (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      myrealname, Demi Moaned, Chitown Kev

      that didn't run.

      Purely for rational speaking, Huckabee would've been formidable. Although he's a complete religious right loon, an actual pastor, he knows how to speak sanity.

      I sincerely hope that this year's debacle has degraded the prospects for the slate in 2016.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 11:12:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  You're right. I overstated the case. (0+ / 0-)

        But I don't think there is a good enough messenger to make their dystopian policies genuinely attractive to a majority of the electorate.

        "The smartest man in the room is not always right." -Richard Holbrooke

        by Demi Moaned on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 12:52:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  All of what you say may be true, but (7+ / 0-)

    Mitt was a problem as well. He's a dick. He talks like a dick. He walks like a dick. He's a dick.

  •  Mitt would have been happy enough to run (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skrekk

    as Moderate Mitt right from the beginning of the primaries to the end, if that's what they had asked him to do.  He's an adaptable fellow, that way.

    "The extinction of the human race will come from its inability to EMOTIONALLY comprehend the exponential function." -- Edward Teller

    by lgmcp on Thu Nov 15, 2012 at 11:16:09 AM PST

  •  It's much simpler than that... (0+ / 0-)

    A majority of voters in several critcal swing states chose Barrack Obama over Mitt Romney.  Period.

    As much as we'd like to delude ourselves that these elections are about policy, class warfare, racism, whatever your issue is, the reality is that Americans almost always choose the presidential candidate that they LIKE the most.  Maybe the Obama message machine framed Romney as a rich dick, but that only reinforced the fact that a lot of Americans were inclined to not particularly like Mitt Romney.  If Americans had liked him more, then GOP voters would have liked him more, and he'd have won his primary more easily.  Yes, he was probably the best the GOP had, and nobody else could have made the race closer, but that just means that the rest of the GOP field was even less likable.  Is this so hard to believe:  Rick Santorum?  Michelle Bachman?  Newt F'ing Gingrich????

    If there was one major misread by the GOP, it was that there are a lot fewer Americans that hate Obama than they thought there were.  This, combined with no particular affection for Romney, was the difference.  Turnout was big, but not decisive.  Obama voters turned out like 2008, but the GOP also turned out like 2008.  If GOP voters liked Romney, they would have turned out like 2004, and Romney would have won VA and CO, and we'd still be counting votes in OH and FL.

    In the last 100 years, the more charismatic candidate has won nearly every presidential election.  There were two exceptions.  In 1964, the country was far too liberal for Goldwater, and the country was not prepared to have four different presidents in four years.  In 1968, charisma was a tie (neither had it), but Richard Nixon was the still quite viable (and gracious loser of a dubious election in 1960) former VP of a successful administration, running against the VP of an embattled administration.

    Obama is objectively more likeable than Mitt Romney, just like Bush was more objectively likeable than Gore or Kerry - maybe not to everybody, but to the less informed "average" voter.  And, no, readers of this site are not average voters.  

    The 2016 election will be a contest between two men (no, I don't think Hillary will be nominated).  The events that transpire between now and then will have an impact, but not nearly as much as which candidate the average voter would prefer to have as a friend.  

    •  I think it runs a little deeper than that, (0+ / 0-)

      I think people need to identify with the person and the message. Jimmy Carter was not necessarily more charismatic than Gerald Ford, but he certainly had the right message for the time, someone outside of Washington DC politics who could rise above the ugliness. And I think in the case of gore and Kerry, they did well despite the lack of personal charisma. Their messages were attractive. Had it just been about personal identity, they would have been shellacked.

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