In Defense of McCain-Romney - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
In Defense of McCain-Romney

Unsurprisingly, Phil Klein’s broadside against Mitt Romney is vastly overstated. “The only state Romney has the potential to help in is Michigan, but there is no hard evidence to back up this speculation,” he writes. But you don’t have to go far to find evidence of Romney’s Michigan appeal — just scroll up: “Romney was able to turn economic jitters to his advantage in the Michigan primary (after pledging $20 billion in subsidies for the auto industry), but he wasn’t able to gain much traction on the issue elsewhere.”

And why do you suppose that Romney gained traction in Michigan that he didn’t gain elsewhere? Could it be that older Michiganders have warm feelings about George Romney, and his son has a built in advantage? Of course it is. Michigan Democrats are spooked enough by Romney’s strength that they’ve already cut an attack ad, and he’s not even on the ticket yet.

And it isn’t true that Michigan is the only state where Romney might arguably help. There’s also New Hampshire, where Romney is well known (thanks to the local-media overlap with Massachusetts) and has some very committed fans (I know because I encountered them on the campaign trail). McCain won 37% of the vote in the New Hampshire Republican primary to Romney’s 32%; McCain-Romney would be a unity ticket that could at least conceivably help quell the lingering bitterness from that campaign.

Then there’s Nevada, where Obama currently leads by an average of 1.7%. Nevada is 7.41% Mormon; presumably Romney would help goose LDS turnout, which could be decisive.

Does all this outweigh Romney’s weaknesses? Perhaps, perhaps not. But to call a Romney pick “nothing short of political suicide” is nothing short of preposterous.

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