Mitt Romney is the weakest candidate Republicans have put up since Barry Goldwater in 1964 — but at least Goldwater served a higher purpose. Romney is plastic; he can’t “connect” with non-wealthy Americans; he has shown underwhelming ability to use financial advantages to secure wins anywhere near the size of those advantages; he has no geographic base; he has alienated large swaths of the Republican base; he’s stiff; he seems humorless; and he has no personal story of ever overcoming any real personal hurdle.
Still, he’s against an extraordinarily beatable incumbent — and an extraordinarily dangerous one, dangerous to the entire American idea. If Romney runs a perfect or near-perfect campaign, he can win, just because Obama has energized so much of the public against him. And Romney might put up decent Supreme Court candidates, and certainly will put up ones that at worst are fence-sitters rather than leftist activists; he will show at least some understanding of and appreciation for the free market; and he will not use the administrative agencies to run roughshod over individual liberties.
Conservatives should be thankful for small favors.