Johnathan Martin reports that the McCain camp has purchased the website www.mittvsfact.com to catalogue Romney’s contradictory stances on issues. Now, I’ve been as critical of Romney’s transparent political oppourtunism as anybody, but I don’t quite understand the strategy of doing an all out assault on Romney when you’re trailing Giuliani and likely Thompson. Especially this early. Does the McCain camp simply think that Giuliani and Thompson will fade and they’ll be left with Romney? Or do they think if they can knock off Romney early, they’d do better in a two man race with Giuliani or Thompson? Beats me.
Another possibility is that it’s not really a rational political decision, but that Romney just really annoys the McCain camp. Think about it. One of the main appeals of McCain is that he’s a straight talking leader who is willing to say things that aren’t politically popular. Romney, meanwhile, is willing to say or do whatever it takes to gain the support of conservatives, even if it means taking positions that are completely different from his prior stances. In a sense, Romney is the sort of cookie cutter posturing politician that annoys the heck out of McCain people, the type of figure that turned them away from traditional politicians, and turned them on to McCain in the first place. Perhaps they can’t control their disgust anymore. While I empathize with many of their criticisms of Romney, I question whether such a strategy will help McCain. It could even hurt his cause by raising Romney’s profile, and making McCain look desperate. And as Rich Lowry put it, “Indisputably good news if you are Rudy Giuliani or Fred Thompson.”
UPDATE: Patrick Ruffini is also perplexed.