Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Election 2012 Postmortem: How "It's Our Turn" Died

by Sunnyjane

The Day the Universe Hiccuped and the GOP Went Nuts

According to whichever online horoscopes they'd been tracking, or whichever dead psychics they'd been channeling, the Republicans somehow thought they had the 2012 election in the bag.  After all, they had suckered buckets o'money out of donors who didn't even like the candidate.  They had wiz-kid internal pollster (heh) Karl Rove promising them the sun, the moon, and the stars that Mitt Romney would not only win the presidency, but would keep the House in GOP control and deliver a Senate majority to top things off.  

It's hard to tell what voodoo formula Karl Rove was using to concoct a numbers scenario that convinced the candidate, the campaign, and the cash contributors that in the early morning hours of November 7, there would appear before them a President-Elect Romney.  As everyone knows, the candidate is a spreadsheet guy: Show me the bottom line, don't bother me with how we get there. 

Is it just coincidental that so many Republican governors ended up in swing statesHardly.  It was obviously all part of the Grand Plan to make Barack Obama a one-term president.  As it turned out, the President lost only one, North Carolina, which happened to be governed by a Democrat.  How's that for irony?

Of the other eight battleground states -- Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio, Virginia, and Wisconsin -- seven have an agent-in-place Tea Party or Republican governor. (New Hampshire is governed by Democrat John Lynch, who will be replaced in January by Democrat Maggie Hassan.)  And where did most of the voter suppression occur?  That's right, dear readers, in those swing states.  And as far as voter suppression goes, we can throw in Pennsylvania for good measure.

But on paper, it must have seemed a great strategy for a Republican victory.  So certain were they of victory that they predicted a -- wait for it -- LANDSLIDE for their candidate.

Goodness!  What could possibly go wrong?

A Flawed Campaign for a Flawed Candidate

Mitt Romney came into the 2012 election cycle via Bain Capital and the Massachusetts governorship.  At Bain, he achieved great success, mainly by taking over American businesses and outsourcing them to China, which turned out not to be such a great reputation for the I know how to create jobs image he tried so hard to promote.  

In an attempt to gain some required political creds, Romney ran for governor of Massachusetts in 2002 and won.  He had promised job creation and touted that he knew how to solve budget problems.  On these two issues alone, Democrats and Independents voted for him.  However, it soon became apparent to not only those two factions, but to loyal Republicans, that Mitt Romney was full of crap.  By the end of his term, Massachusetts had fallen to 47th in jobs growth, manufacturing fell to third in the nation, and start-up businesses fell by ten percent, consistently lagging behind the national average.  For the unkindest cut of all, Governor Romney outsourced government jobs to India and China.

During the primaries, we began to see a Mitt Romney that no one particularly cared for, and his unlikeability factor increased exponentially after he clinched the nomination.  He came across as crude, entitled, and unapproachable to all but his own clique of One Percenters. Exposing the American electorate to wife Ann didn't do anything to diminish the image that was rapidly emerging in the developing solution of voters' minds.  In fact, people began to dislike Ann as much as they did her husband.  In the same interview in which Mitt said, Start packing to the question on what he had to say to President Obama, Ann told the nation that It's Mitt's time...it's our turn.  That probably would have been quickly forgotten in the chatter of a vigorous campaign had she not continued her verbal assaults, such as You people when talking about Mitt's refusal to release more of his tax returns; There are going to be cuts made to a lot of programs people aren't going to like; I don't consider myself wealthyI love the fact that there are women out there who don't have a choice and must go to work; etc.  American women were not seduced by this privileged woman who pretended to understand and sympathize with their issues.

It also didn't add to Mitt's charm or credibility factors when he boldly stated in the second debate that parents are to blame for their children's violent tendencies, and then his son, Tagg, announced the next day that he had wanted to rush the stage and punch the President.   Hmmm...

But never mind, the campaign said, Mitt was definitely going to win this thing!  So, what went wrong?

It Was The Message, Stupid.  In the seemingly never-ending Republican primary season, Romney did his damnedest to out-conservative the other severely conservative candidates.   
Except for diehard racists and the majority of  evangelical and Mormon worshipers,   Mitt Romney had irritated, insulted, ridiculed, and lied to every core constituency he needed to win the presidency in 2012: young voters, college students,  senior citizens, women, LGBTs, African Americans, Latinos, the poor, single parents, and the middle class.  And, pet owners and animal lovers in general.

Mitt Romney's stump speeches and campaign ads were full of lies -- many of which he kept repeating: Jeep was going to China.  The President had gutted Medicare by $716B and had taken away the welfare-to-work requirements. Steve Benen of The Maddow Blog has spent much of 2012 chronicling Mitt Romney's lies; these writings alone are worthy of a book on how the 2012 Republican candidate conducted his campaign.

A fact Romney and his campaign failed to comprehend: Americans do not appreciate being lied to.  Nor do they appreciate their intelligence being insulted.

Faith-Based Voting Will Get Us Where We Want to Go

Oh, really?

And, the icing on Rove's cake:

An Idiot Abroad

This pretty much sums up the adequacy of Mitt Romney to be the Republican presidential candidate:

A (Very) Brief Look at the Vice Presidential Candidate

Like with Sarah Palin in 2008, America dodged a bullet with the lying, know-nothing fool, Paul Ryan.

Here a Conspiracy, There a Conspiracy...

In a fit of complete nuttiness, I had actually contemplated the notion of adding to this post some of the ridiculous conspiracy theories that floated around during President Obama's first term in office.  When reality presented itself, I realized it would take approximately sixteen posts to adequately present them all.  However, it took the genius of Rachel Maddow  to brilliantly address the entire issue in only 206 words: 

Ohio really did go to President Obama last night.  And he really did win.  And he really was born in Hawaii.  And he really is legitimately President of the United States – again.  And the Bureau of Labor Statistics did not make up a fake unemployment rate last month.

And the Congressional Research Service really can find no evidence that cutting taxes on rich people grows the economy.  And the polls were not skewed to over sample Democrats.  And Nate Silver was not making up fake projections about the election to make conservatives feel bad.  Nate Silver was doing math.

And Climate Change is real.  And rape really does cause pregnancy sometimes.  And evolution is a thing.  And Benghazi was an attack on us, it was not a scandal by us.  And nobody is taking away anyone’s guns.  And taxes have not gone up.  And the deficit is dropping, actually.  And Saddam Hussein did not have weapons of mass destruction.  And the Moon landing was real.  And FEMA is not building concentration camps.  And UN election observers are not taking over Texas.  And moderate reforms of the regulations on the insurance industry and the financial services industry in this country are not the same thing as communism.


And here endeth the coverage of the non-election of Willard Mitt Romney.  Democracy is in safe hands again.


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