Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Romney and Ryan Choice: Wrong Man at Wrong Time

Foresight again, and not hindsight.  I told you so. If lyu think I am above that sort of petty taunting, you are wrong.  I love it.  I told lyu that Paul Rayn was the WRONG chocie for President, and not just because I had condemned Ryan long ago as someone who had betrayed conservative princiiples.

First there was the Medicare problem. Sure, Ryan--wrongly, in my view--was known as a "budget hero" and "expertt" to consrvatives.  But this was part of the overall problem of the Rmney campaign. Did Romney REALLY come across as a guy WORRIED ABOUT THE DEFICIT, with his proposed across-the-board tax cut and big INCREASE in defense spending?  I am not talking abut the merits here. What GOOD was Ryan to Rmney?  He had that Medicare "baggage", and Romney was just never going to make a real ISSUE out of the BUDGET. Did Romney know this?  He should have.  I, for one, basically said Rmney wsa ot credible as a "Te Party", "balance the budget" guy.  Palin--much MORE conservative than Ryan, did not help McCain.  Okay, Ryan wsa Caholic, but NOT an ETHNIC Catholic.  See "white bread" "criticism" below.

Second, Ryan came out of the House of Representatives, where he did NOT have a real national preence, eXCEPT as the subject of those Democrat attacks for trying to "destroy" Medicare.  Ann Coulter lurched into the truth tonight when she said that members of the House of Representatives should stop tryng to be Presdient, and cluttering up the field.  It ain't going to happen.  They are just too localized, and unused to races on a larger canvas.  I go further.  I don't think ANY Presidential candidate shuld pick a member of the House of Representatives for VP.  Eve with Ryan, who had ths budget reputation, it wsa jsut too "light weight" a choice, no matter HOW "heavywithgt" Ryan may be intellectually.  No additoin to Romney.  Romney had to sell HIMSELF with conservatives, as he mopstly did (not with me). Ran was jsut no real help, and he definitely did not help when Romney is running a "moderate" campaign, and seemingly chose Ryan as a DESPERATE "token" chooice for conservatives. In that sense, Ryan ws mnuch like the choice of Paline, although Palin had both advantages and disadvantages compared with Ryan.

This brings us to the main problem, confirmed by my Hispanic female friend Sylvia this evening on our evening walk:  Ryan is just too WHITE BREAD, plain vanilla (in presentatino), when joined with the even more "white bread" Romney.  Yes, Ryan is sort of "workning class Catholic", but he does not come across that way . And, again, Ryan and Rmney really never made a cONSISTENT pich for CAHOLICS (Hispanci Catholics, especially). Off and on, it was in the campaign, but Romney--especially at the convention--appeared more worried about being a MORMON than about "reaching out' to Hispanic and other Catholics (not to mentin evangelicals, etc.).  What never CHANGED was the IMAGE of Romney as a very "white" Wall St. guy, with a running mate with the SAME IMAGE.  Even the families looked the same . No. I am not talking about RACE.  I am talking aobut IMAGE, and CONNECTING.  Neither Romney nor Ryan really showed any ability to connect to peole not exactly like them.  Ryan LOOKED like a WASP, even though he is a working class Cathoic.  And his MANNER is not like, say, ChrisChristie.

That is why I said that Romney really had ONLY two choices for VP:  Marco Rubio and Chris Christie. I always preferred Rubio, even though I have been disapppointed in his performance, as getting away from the "white bread" image. Yes, Rubio is Hispanic, but that is not the main point.  He presented a DIFFERENT image than Romney.  Now it appears to me, and did so at the time, that Chris Christie was too dangerous.  I like his bluntness, but he was a truly risky choice.  And I believe Romney was proven right not to choose Chrisite, after hearing his convention speech and seeing how he handled the Obama photo op "meeting' after Sandy. Nevertheless, you should get my point.  Christie was DIFFERENT from Obama: a different image.  How couuld ethnic peole "identify" with Romney/Ryan?  Only if they were BOLD in appealing to such people.  Romney did NOT run a BOLD campaign.  He and Ryan appelaed to peole like themselves, and it was not enough.  Ryan was a bad choice. I say thaqt even though Ryan did a good job as the VP choice.  But he ADDED NOTHING, and the combined image actualy DETRACTED from making Romney "approachable' to people different from him (and not only in being 'rich').

Now were both Rubio and Christie ToO DANGEROUS.  I asked this questin at the time, and said that is why I could not really say Romney made a bad mistake not choosing one of them.  Christie alkways did appear dangerous, and later events have provent that assesssment to be accurate.  TOO "different". That left Rubio.  But Rubio is NEW--although as "experienced" as Obama was.  Are there any "skeletons" in Rubio's closet, and would he have really been able to handle such a quick rise into a natinal campaign?  Maybe not.  I can't say Romney should have chosen Rubio  Again, maybe it was goo dangerous.  Romney wa not, after all, as bad off as McCain.  However, I think I was proven RIGHT (yet again) that Romney NEEEDED soebody who looked DIFFERENT from him, and had a different, more approachable manner. WHO?  Ah, that was my problem at the time.  Rudy Guliani, wih all of that baggage? John Bolton, with no real political esxperience?  Condi Rice, who always struck me as WRONG (much as I like her). ?  Romney could not pick any of his OPPONENTS in the primaries..  An Then There Were None quoting Agatha Christie again.  Bobby Jindal?  Maybe, but NO electoral help at all.  Maybe a turn off in the Middle West.  Rubioo still seems to bme to be the choice, IF he was at all up to it.  But if Rmney wanted to be SAFE, should he have chosen a fellow "moderate" like Rob Portman?  Might make ME foam at the mouth, but it would have been better than Rayn . Ryan could not even deliber Wisconsin.  If Romney was gong to go "white bread", and safe, he should have chosen someone like Portman. No.  NOT Pawlenty--"white bread" and HOPLESS. 

Okay.  It was a tough choice.  There really were few plausible alternatives.  It is possible Ryan was the best choice available, even though he was obviusly a BAD choice (as, agan, I said at the time).  Why bring it up, if I can't even be sure Ryan was really a "mistake?  Because it shows how Romney just lacked BOLDNESS.  He and Ryan jsut never made real inroads into ethnic areas:  whether "REagan Democrats" or Hispanics.  I don't think Hispanics WANT to be associated with ILLEGAL immigrants, as Democrats and the media keep insisting.  But Sylvia confirmed that Hispanics jsut did not look kindly on the Romney/Ryan combination.  I think Romney had a CHANCE, with women, after the first debate.  But, again, a lack of BOLDNESS and MMESSAGE kept him from taking advantage. Was there any WOMAN out there he could have chosen, who was SAFE?  I could not think of one.  Martinez, in new Mexico, was just too NEW.  Maybe Rob Portman was "afest", even if I would have sputtered Still "white bread", but a guy obviusly "seasoned" and cloe to Romney.  GOP estalbishment guy.  I don't know.  What I do now is that this LACK OF BOLDNESS and CONSISTGENT STRATEGY is what defeated Romney .

Choose a VP that ADDS something, and fits your overall strategy.  Romney did not do that, partly because he had NO real strategy or "pont of view'  for this election.  This was obvius at the disastours GOP convention.  Ryan speech fine, but no real MESSAGE, or sense of overall stratgy.  Romney speech NOT FINE, because it really accomplished nothing at all.  And Ryan never seemed to have a real role in the camaign,.

Nope.  The more I think about it, the more I know that Rmney HAD to choose SOMEBODY besides Ryan, even though Ryan did nothing bad as the VP candidate.  The IMAGE was just WRONG, and the overall strategy was not there.  "Attack dog" Ryan? never materialized.  A "white bread" ticket putting forth a "vanilla" campaign:  enough to come close, but no cigar.  Rush Limbaugh, who seems to have been overwhelmed by Romney as a "Limbuahg kind of guy", was all depressed today because he thought Romney ran a GOOD campaign, and sill lost.  I beg to differ.  Limbaugh is too partisan, and hates to "lose". Romney ran a BAD campaign, with the wrong VP choice, that appealed TOO MUCH to peole like Limbaugh (writing off the "47%).  Yet. Rmoney COULD have won anyway We will never know if he WOULD have won without Sandy, and the Chris Christie bear hug (another time when Romney HAD to be somehow BOLD--like suddenly giving INTERVIEWS during "down time', or joining forces with Franklni Graham in giving his own money for IMMEDIATE RELIEF, or SOMETHING. Then Romney rsumed with a 'bipartisan" message:  realy not good enough.  Nope again.  Contrary to what Limbaugh said today ,this electin did NOT indicate" we" (conservatives" are "outnumbered".  It merely indicated we LACK LEADERSHIP that could have BUILT on 2010 and carried the momentum into 2012.  Our "leaders" have been outnumbered and outgunned, and that was true of Romney. 

See previous article.  Unfortunately, I still see no real leader out there.  There are POSSIBILITIES, but no ne hads really stepped forward, as someone SHOULD have in this electin (not to mentin the past 2 years).  Where is the WOW of a conventin speech (like Ronald Reagan or BarackObama)? Where are the peole out there WKNNING races for GOOP candidates?  i don't see it.  Some such person needs to STEP FORWARD by the 2014 mid-term, or conservatives may be faced with another leadership gvacuum in 2016.  No. You can't TART the 206 race now.  But you CAn lay the groundwork, and I don't see that any conservative leader has even begun to do that yet. 

P.S. No proofreading or spell checking (bad eyesight).  I have complained for years of this lack of leadershi for conservatives, and it is not getting any better.  Romney, despite Limbaugh's approval of his campaign, is jsut another example of a failure of leadership.  I am right on this, and Limbaugh is wrong again.  Notice how I was RIGHT not to attempt to "analyze" polls--as so many "conservatives" did--to show how Romney was going to "win' based on a correct view of the plls.  This obsessin with polls is ridiculous  I predicted a Romney win based on the ECONMY.  I was wrong.  I still think he SHOULD have won on this basis, and that he did not HAVE to be 'outnumered".  But at least I did not make myself look ridiculous going though polls as if I know exactly how to interpret them. I am right on all of this, and Limbaugh was wrong (on polls, and Romney as a "good" candidate). Oh. If the pols had been predicting a ten pont Obama win, I would not have stuck by my prediction of a Romney win (although I HOPE polls will be off tghat much some day).  But plls should be pretty much ignored.  Will Dick Morris, Karl Rove and all of these other "conservative" "experts" now Go AWAY, after they have been PROVEN so WRONG?  We can only hope.

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