Monday, September 17, 2012

Romney's Rats Shipboard Romance Fails

I've been involved in politics long enough to have held some pretty strong delusions. I remember believing, right up until the end, that Walter Mondale was going to beat Ronald Reagan in 1984.

There was a San Diego city council election a few years later where I was working 25-hour days for an incumbent who was also a friend. I was absolutely convinced we were going to win until the campaign consultant took me aside and  told me to stay away from the election night festivities. My candidate wasn't just toast, she was landslide toast.

In 2008, John McCain was leading in the polls following the Republican Convention. A fact absolutely no Democrat believed.

I mention these stories because campaigns need this kind of blind enthusiasm.  No one can put in the kind of effort campaigns require if you believe you are going to get your ass handed to you while you are being kicked in the nuts.

I mention all this because the aura of panic surrounding the Romney campaign has a very particular stench to it. 
A rats, sinking ship stench.

There was never, even when he was winning primaries, any enthusiasm for Mitt Romney. His was always a spinach and peas campaign (I know you hate it, but it's good for you.). Republican election enthusiasm has always been exclusively anti-Obama; it didn't matter to them if their candidate was Romney, Bachmann, Cain, or Ish Kabibble (or Donald Trump).

Mitt Romney may have won the lottery but he never won the hearts of his own supporters. Now that polls are showing a few faint signs of Obama leading Romney supporters are falling over each other assigning blame while scrambling for the lifeboats. There is no sign of the blind faith that a candidate ought to inspire.

That doesn't mean Romney can't still win. Dicky Nixon was elected President and even his supporters loathed him.  But the dearth of people willing to walk through fire for Mitt Romney is a good sign for the rest of us.

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