Mitt Romney's enthusiasm chasm, according to Mitch McConnell
Last week, Richard wrote about Mitt Romney's "enthusiasm chasm," translating Marco Rubio's rather half-hearted endorsement as:
Yep, Romney is going to be the Republican nominee and I'm a Republican so I guess I'll be supporting him.
Well, Rubio isn't alone. A lot Republicans are having a hard time getting behind Romney with anything resembling enthusiasm. And we all know that Romney isn't exactly beloved by the grassroots primary voters who are holding their noses at his very presence, if not vehemently opposing him. And it's not like the conservative elite likes him much either, whether it's Dear Leader Rush or Krazy Kristol, while those who are behind him, like Will and Krauthammer, just don't seem all that convincing -- and seem like they're trying to convince themselves as much as anyone.
The latest example of a high-profile elected Republican unable to summon any enthusiasm at all: Mitch McConnell, who said this yesterday:
It's absolutely apparent that it's in the best interests of our party at this particular point to get behind the person who is obviously going to be our nominee and to begin to make the case against the president of the United States.
In other words: "Okay -- (sigh) -- looks like Romney will be the nominee, so we might as well support him -- (yawn) -- because at least he's not Obama.
And there was more:
Most of the members of the Senate Republican Conference are either supporting him, or they have the view that I do, that it's time to turn our attention to the fall campaign.
So other Republican senators are unenthused as well. It ain't just McConnell.
Oh, sure, he also said that Romney's "going to be an excellent candidate," but that only means that Mitt has been a not excellent candidate so far.
And McConnell hasn't even formally endorsed him yet. It's like he's just supporting him by default, supporting him because he's likely going to win and because, well, Republicans have to support the Republican, like it or not.
I think he will be an outstanding nominee. I think he can win the election.
Well, he has to say that, doesn't he? He has to express optimism. He has his standing as a big-time Republican leader to uphold, after all.
Based on what else he said, though, it's hard to believe he means it.