Countless facts can be cited — but it all comes down to six basic reasons.
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The relentless negativity and agility of Obama’s campaign was the fifth reason Romney lost. Obama concentrated on characterizing Romney in every way — some fundamentally untrue — but where was Romney’s counter-imaging of Obama? Romney’s sole theme was that he was better able to fix our economy’s problems. That inflexible narrative was destroyed by Obama’s themes — crafted carefully to suit individual liberal constituencies — which successfully characterized Romney as disconnected from the average American, dedicated only to helping the rich and destroying women’s rights.
By contrast Romney, running hard and doing his best, remained on the defensive throughout the campaign. Neither Romney nor his supposed allies in the super-PAC community went outside the narrative that Obama had crafted. Romney and his campaign remained hermetically sealed. They refused offers of help from constituencies — including aerospace unions — that could have helped with constituencies otherwise out of reach.
Which brings us to the last reason Romney lost: the huge and ineffective campaigns run by super-PACs such as Karl Rove’s “American Crossroads.” Rove’s outfits alone gathered about $400 million from donors and simply didn’t do their job. That money — if invested in more politically-acute efforts — could have helped Romney immensely. But the money only served to further feed the egos and incomes of the people running the super-PACs.
So there are the facts, as plainly as they can be parsed out. Romney lost not only because of his own poor political skills, but because the Republican Establishment allowed itself to be controlled by people more interested in their own enrichment than in electoral success and nominated a candidate who was doomed from the start.
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It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
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