Stuart Stevens, the chief strategist for the Romney campaign, wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post saying, in essence, that Romney won a majority of the Real Americanstm — you know, the white, middle-class voters, the ones who really matter.
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…
Yes, the Republican Party has problems, but as we go forward, let’s remember that any party that captures the majority of the middle class must be doing something right.
He uses this to argue that the Romney campaign did a fine job and that Romney was, in fact, a terrific candidate. He even uses that tried-and-true coaching tactic of “no one thought we could win.”
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.
In what universe? Nearly everyone thought Romney was going to win the Republican nomination. That’s why all the talk about every other candidate in the race was about whether they could sustain a serious challenge to Romney’s huge advantages in money and organization. Along the way he uses a lot of vague, unsupportable claims of the sort that losers always tell themselves. Sure, Romney may have lost, but he “trounced Barack Obama in debate,” “defended the free-enterprise system,” and “brought the fight to the Democrats.” Oh, he also “captured the imagination of millions of Americans,” “spoke for those who felt disconnected from the Obama vision of America,” and “handled the unequaled pressures of a campaign with a natural grace and good humor.” Which all adds up to a nearly delusional declaration of victory:
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.
Uh, no. They didn’t. Nor should the Democrats be claiming that Obama’s win means the public agrees with his “ideals” (whatever they may be). But Obama did win the election, for crying out loud. He at least has some reason to believe such a thing; Stevens is just whistling past the graveyard.