The making of an anti-Romney
I have tried to emphasize time and again here that I am not anti-Romney.
When I endorsed Newt on November 16, I made sure to point out that I thought Romney was a smart and decent person, but I saw fundamental flaws in his candidacy, none of which have gone away. When asked to lend my name to the NotMittRomney group of bloggers, I ignored the request.
It’s getting really hard to maintain a not anti-Romney position.
I was a little bit ahead of the Newt wave, and predicted Newt that he would face a tough time through Christmas.
Never did I anticipate the massive blow-back from the establishment Republican and conservative media that we have witnessed since the day Newt surpassed Romney in the polls. Mark Levin compares it to what we witnessed with Sarah Palin, when the same people who now sneer at Newt sneered at Palin with dismissive disdain in a highly personal and demeaning manner.
The anyone-but-Newt editorial the National Review just published is almost the last straw. The Editors of National Review presume to tell us that the field of candidates needs to be “winnowed” starting with Newt (and others thrown in as an afterthought), leaving only Romney and two low-polling challengers (Huntsman and Santorum).
Erick Erickson (with whom I have vehemently disagreed in the past), gets it right this time, A Chorus of Scientologists Claim Jim Jones Runs A Cult:
While I might choose to look at that record and go with Gingrich, the fine folks at National Review have endorsed Mitt Romney with a blistering broadside about Newt Gingrich for being unelectable.
Unfortunately for Mitt Romney, he is so bad a candidate that National Review cannot even use the word endorsement in their endorsement. They describe it as “winnowing the field,” but they stack the field for declaring that he and two guys barely at 2% in the national polling (Jon Huntsman and Rick Santorum) are the only viable candidates….
If National Review wants to endorse or not endorse that’s fine by me, but trying to sell us Romney with a non-endorsement endorsement that makes Clinton’s non-denial denial about Lewinsky look honest is a bit much.
Certainly National Review has not been alone.
Charles Krauthammer engaged is an act of supreme denial when he attacked Newt as talking like “a socialist” when Newt brought up Romney’s Bain problem, yet has been silent (as far as I can tell) when Romney attacked Newt yesterday over jewelry Newt bought for his wife with his own money at Tiffany. The Bain problem is the single most likely issue to sink a Romney general election candidacy, but we are being told we are socialists if we bring it up.
Ann Coulter, who 10 months ago told us Romney absolutely would lose to Obama, now is telling us Romney can win and attacks Newt with the verbal and textual equivalent of spit.
And I could go on and on.
Back to Erickson’s post:
It is amazing to me the GOP is headed where it is with a nominee. It is more amazing to me that so many Washington conservatives have hitched their wagon to the one guy who wholly does not fit the spirit of this election and whose governing legacy in Massachusetts is the state level equivalent of Barack Obama’s federal legacy….
With Paul Ryan turning his back on his own plan it becomes harder to attack Newt Gingrich for his criticisms of the Ryan plan. With National Review going full on Team Mittens, suddenly the guy who was once Speaker of the United States House of Representatives is standing on the outside looking in at the establishment so many grassroots activists have already rejected.
My position since the beginning is that Romney needed to make the case for himself, not just against others. That has not taken place yet, and now that Romney’s campaign has embarked on the strategy of crazy against Newt, it is unlikely to happen.
The conservative media which should be vetting Romney instead have declared war on every contender who rises to challenge him, and on everyone who questions the assumptions and weaknesses of his candidacy.
In many ways I’m back to October 6, long before I decided to back Newt, wondering How can I support a candidate when I can’t stand other supporters of the candidate?
That’s still the problem. And the harder they try to force a Romney nomination on us without making the positive case for Romney, the closer I come to a decision I really don’t want to make.
Update: The publisher of National Review is boasting that the next issue of the print publication will be devoted primarly to attacking Newt, and Jonah Goldberg calls it the Big Newtapalooza issue.
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As I said elsewhere, the Palinization of Newt has begun. Hopefully he will weather it. Washington wants to tell us who to vote for because we, poor pea-brained, bitter clingers cannot possibly decide for ourselves. What utter arrogance. The Republican powers that be are running scared. The National Review article was not a critique, it was simply an all out attack against Newt. There was no real substance to it, just vitriol.
The pointy heads at NRO all think they are slotted for positions in the Romney admin. …
Almost to a man/woman they are career writers. None of them has ever run for office or held a job outside of the media. Big hats and big boots but no cattle.
You cannot compare Palin and Newt in any way. Palin had no real baggage while Newt has tons of the stuff.
Palin’s history was generally positive while Newt’s was a mixed bag.
Newt is now reaping the results of what he created in the first place.
And lastly, I don’t trust Newt…
Club DC first, principles later.
I got off the Cain trainwreck before the bimbo eruptions (h/t Clinton 1992) when it was clear he wasn’t doing his homework. But I was never going to join Team Mitt. He takes too many issues off the table with Democrats. And what’s is message with Obama going to be? I’d have done better?
I’m not sold on Speaker Gingrich, don’t think I’ll ever be, but if he wins the nomination I will vote for him. I don’t think he’s disciplined enough to win. I really want Perry because in the long run I think he’ll have the best message. I want the next 200+ days to be one long stream of adds like 1 million jobs created in Texas/ 2 million jobs destroyed by Obama. That’s going to be a winning message.
Perry’s message is great … its just he can’t articulate it …
Articulates it a damn sight better than Romney. 🙂
The Republican talking heads had a lot to do with losing the election for John McCain. Now, they are trying, one by one, to tank the entire Republican field. With friends like this, who needs enemies?
It’s even worse than this, because the establishment, after picking McCain, utterly tore apart his campaign by attacking Sarah Palin. Something the media was already doing a good job doing…
It really seems to me the GOP is doomed to ideological backbiting and dogmatic mugging. Who ever gets the nod needs our help beating Obama. Period. I don’t care much what they did in the past, it’s the attempt to “win the future.” The damage done to American liberties, indeed the nations very social fabric, by progressives probably won’t be undone in my lifetime, but that’s no excuse not to get behind a candidate and pressure them to start the recovery NOW.
I read all of this stuff and I’m thinking, Jesus, when the heck will this all be over!
I want to change my vote in that “Doomsday poll.” I will not vote for Romney. Not that it matters. Romney would be crushed in the general.
We could be heading for 1975 again. Back then, conservatives within the Republican Party were in open revolt against the east coast liberal Republican establishment. They were on the verge of forming a third party.
Reagan persuaded them not to with his 1975 CPAC speech. Here’s a brief excerpt:
Once again, grass roots conservatives are fed up with establishment Republicans who prefer being Assistant Democrats just so they get to control how the $3.5 trillion we send to Washington every year gets spent. Formerly conservative organs like NRO are abandoning conservatism. There’s no Reagan in 2011 to hold the party together like he did in 1975.
Conservatives must be asking ourselves why they want to remain Republicans.
The difference between Newt and Palin is Newt’s flaws are many, varied AND DOCUMENTED.
2 divorces … check … ? but what else ?
You know, I dont even care if they Vet Mitt as much.
What i want is someone, anyone, to tell me Why should I vote for Romney!
No one ever does. Sure, they spew nonsense like “he is the only serious candidate” or “he is the only one that can beat Obama” or whatever – but no one really ever tells us why we should vote for him.
So I’m left not knowing why I am told I need to vote Romney – I just know I am constantly told I should vote Romney by everyone from the Establishment talking-heads to the Liberal Media to the DNC and Obama Admin.
I’m beginning to think Mitt should switch his party real fast and Challenge Obama for the DNC nomination claiming he represents the blue-dog Democrats or whatever. Then, at least, we Conservatives could have a choice between Conservatives we mike like instead of this nonsensical “take who we say you should like” bull…
Exactly. There is no case to be made for voting for Romney. None.
Romney will be an unmitigated disaster in the general election. His single biggest achievement while governor is Romneycare.
He’s going to be portrayed as achieving exactly what Obama achieved — before Obama did. They’re both Harvard Law grads who took different paths. The only difference between them is that Obama spent his time community organizing after graduating from Harvard Law out of a deep sense of compassion for helping poor people, while Romney used his Harvard Law degree to transform himself into a greedy, heartless Gordon Gecko who took advantage of the very people Obama was trying to help and created a net worth for himself of a couple of hundred million dollars in the process.
Obama’s campaign hopes to have a billion bucks to tell that story.
I suspect Romney will lose in a near historic landslide.
And we’ll be able to thank many of the people on our side for helping make it happen. That’s why I think we may be heading for a third party situation in 2012 or 2013.
NRO has become National Romney Online …
I have been amazed at the level of personal attacks on Newt at NRO. It reads like a Daily Kos posting most days …
They have completely given up trying to sell you on Romney’s positives and simply slash and burn his opponents, especially Newt and usually with the type of personal smear tactics reserved for the left and the MSM.
Heres a thought:
The GOP Establishment Intelligensia feels Romney has the best chance out of a very weak field to beat Obama but will likely lose. However, they have been assured by the Romney camp that Rubio will be his VP choice. So, they are backing Romney to elevate Rubio for 2016 should Romney lose. Works as a win/win in their eyes because win or lose Rubio becomes the GOP’s way into the Latino demographic.
Although I have officially endorsed Rick Santorum, I like Newt and I don’t like all the attacks on him. But if it’s any consolation, my entire extended family has looked at the field and they like Newt, they don’t like Mitt, and they give not one single damn at all about what any of the attackers say. And Newt’s right about the “Palestinians”, it is refreshing to see someone speak the truth. Mittens is a gutless crapweasel who is also a politically correct useful idiot for islam. After 9/11 Bush kept telling us that islam is a religion of peace, then we got Obama whose entire domestic and foreign policy is “islam first”, it would be nice if we could have a president who didn’t bow down to kiss the raised butts of the mohamdeens who actively seek our destruction. (Which is why I backed Santorum, but also am fond of Gingrich.)
Mitt is already revealing himself to be petty and vain, all his attacks do is highlight that and swell the growing ranks of the Not Mitt movement. I have not met a single person online or off who actually likes the guy or thinks he should be the nominee. NOT ONE. He seems to be favored only by the self-proclaimed “smart people”, who are often actually very very stupid about a while lot of things. I’m tired of them trying to make our decisions for us.
PS Thank you for making me your Blog of the Day, Professor, what a delightful honor!
NRO seems to be on the wrong side of a lot of issues. Remember Harriet Meyers and the Dubai port deal? They trashed W unmercifully and at the same time helped destroy an important decision Bush made. Well, China is now in charge of our ports. How’s that going for you, NRO?
I truly despise the dirtiness of politics. It’s no wonder our conservative field is so small. Who wants to have their reputationa and lives destroyed. OTOH, all a dim has to do is obey the party and anything they do is hidden or blown off, i.e. it’s just sex…completely ignoring the President of the United States (who is sworn to uphold the law) lying to a grand jury. Then again, this same president sold us out with the Chinese for campaign funds. I fear the present president is doing the same thing…not just with China but with the entire rest of the world.
[…] has looted and despoiled America now, and for future generations.Let me take this opportunity to join with Legal Insurrection in expressing my further outrage today.My spouse and I have been subscribers to National Review for […]
And when Newt eviscerates Mitt tonight are the folks at NR and all the other members of the circular firing squad going to donate organs and blood to their wounded champion, or pretend they didn’t see what everyone else saw?
The Republicans are hellbent on losing. I am an Indy, and I want to vote for a Republican against Obama. Frankly, Willard Romney gives me a worst visceral reaction than Obama, and I didn’t think it could get worse than that. If he is the anointed one, we and others we know just won’t mark any prez. candidate.
Romney will lose. There is no there there.
Meanwhile, Obama is in the media in fluff pieces and photo ops…
We conservatives are sometime a stupid lot. How many candidates have we backed so far this year, and how easily have we been knocked off each?
Romney’s plan is and always has been to win by default. He knows we hate him. His only path to victory is to try and make us hate everyone else even more. And so many of us have fallen for it!
I’ve been a Perry supporter since before he entered the race. I am still 100% behind this candidate. But if Perry doesn’t start coming back in the polls, I’ll support Newt. He’s not ideal — none of them are — but for me this election is starting to look like anyone-but-Romney even more than anyone-but-Obama. The nation might survive another 4 years of Obama, but the Republican Party won’t survive a Romney presidency.
[…] Known By the Enemies You Make Posted on December 15, 2011 3:30 pm by Bill Quick » The making of an anti-Romney – Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion I have tried to emphasize time and again here that I am not […]
Oh, get off of it! No one can “force a nomination” on the Republican Party. There are 50 state primaries and caucuses in which at least 20 million honest to god American people will cast votes to choose the Republican nominee. If it develops that the candidate preferred right now by National Review, Anne Coulter, Charles Krauthammer, The Weekly Standard, Mark Steyn, and other scribblers is the one selected by those 20 million people, rather than the candidate you’ve endorsed, what have you got to be all huffy about?
That’s politics. That’s democracy. That’s life.
Suck it up.
I hope you will take that attitude if Romney is the nominee when a relative handful of opinion shapers who control the media narrative dance on Mitt’s head with stories of his Bain days and “that” photo of him showing the money, just like Teddy did. I’m sure you’ll just suck it up, just like in 2008 when they put Obama in office. Oh wait, that was all Sarah Palin’s fault right? Good luck with that. You’re not as smart as you think.