You knew this was coming, the attempt to blame a Romney loss to Obama on comments made about Romney by other candidates.
If Gingrich’s White House run is to harm his legacy, it won’t be because he stayed in the race too long. It will be from starring in Democratic attack ads this fall that hurt the Republican presidential nominee as well as House members running for re-election. I bet he will star in two such ads.
The first will attack House members for supporting Paul Ryan’s budget plan that courageously attempts to put our fiscal house in order. Gingrich called it “radical” on “Meet the Press” at the very start of his campaign. Democrats will surely use Gingrich’s words to slam Republican House members. You can just hear the ad declaring over ominous music: ”Even Newt Gingrich called the plan ‘radical.’”
The second ad will likely focus on Mitt Romney’s business experience, using Gingrich and the pro-Gingrich super PAC Winning the Future’s outrageous Michael Moore-style attacks against Romney’s business career earlier in the race to highlight that even Republicans said Romney’s business practices were rapacious and unseemly. Or as Newt himself suggested during the campaign, Romney engaged in “looting” as head of Bain Capital.
This is a bunch of nonsense.
Newt’s comments about the Ryan Plan were taken grossly out of context by Romney supporters, including in the conservative media, and Ryan has ended up moving to Newt’s position on Medicare reform. So Romney and much of the conservative media misrepresented Newt’s statements, and now will complain when Obama takes the same tack?
As to Bain, the attacks were legitimate, but the conservative media shut down the inquiry. So we don’t really know how bad the Bain problem will be in the general election. And who produced that film? It wasn’t Gingrich’s campaign, but a former Romney advisor who shopped it around. Maybe he knows something the rest of us don’t.
Think of all the negative things said against other candidates by Romney and his supporters. Did they give a damn how their words would be played back against Newt or Santorum if either of them were the nominee?
Did the editors of National Review worry in December about the Marvin the Martian cover being used against Newt? Did the Romney campaign worry how its attempt to portray Newt as crazy would be used against Newt?
And how did Romney get to this point that he is the presumptive nominee?
By going massively negative on everyone else and using his campaign wealth to smother others. His carpet bombing of Newt in Iowa and Florida is the only thing that kept Romney from the abyss. I still see non-stop anti-Santorum ads on TV.
Romney has embittered a large segment of the people he will need to rally around him. Profound and historic dislike of Obama is the only thing that will prevent a third party movement or a massive stay-at-home movement.
And it hasn’t stopped. Romney supporters have shown themselves to be sore winners, and there’s nothing worse than sore winners heading into a general election.
Just in the past few days Ann Coulter needlessly attacked Sarah Palin, and Jennifer Rubin compared conservatives who still don’t support Romney to “birthers.” With vocal and visible supporters like this, Romney doesn’t need enemies.
Back in December Jeff Emanuel nailed it:
If Romney loses to Obama, it will not because of Newt, or the Ricks, or anyone else other than the Romney campaign and its supporters, who won the wrong way and are sore winners.