Monday, August 27, 2012

The Ryan Bump

By Carl 

It turned into little more than a pimple:

Mr. Romney was given a 28.0 percent chance of winning the Electoral College on Aug. 10, the day before he officially announced Mr. Ryan as his pick. The forecast then moved somewhat toward Mr. Romney after a series of improved polling in swing states for the newly minted Republican ticket, achieving a peak of 33.3 percent on Wednesday. It has since receded slightly to 30.6 percent, however, as Mr. Obama held leads in a number of swing state polls late last week.

These shifts could be consistent with a small vice-presidential "bounce" for Mr. Romney which has since faded — perhaps as less favorable stories for Republicans, like the comments on abortion and rape made by Representative Todd Akin of Missouri, have come to dominate the news cycle.

But these are only very minor differences — the model estimates that Mr. Romney gained a net of perhaps one percentage point in the popular vote after his selection of Mr. Ryan, and has lost perhaps half a percentage point since then. Changes of that magnitude could potentially be caused by statistical noise, as well as by real shifts of opinion. 

This, coupled with another interesting Veep story in the news today, tells you really all you need to know about Mitt Romney's chances this November.

He stands none. When a choice as intriguing and polarizing as Paul Ryan practically loses you votes (I claim margin of error in that pronouncement), there's something seriously wrong with your ticket, and it ain't your vice presidential choice.

Romney suffers from some of the same problems that John Kerry did in 2004: he's a likable enough guy but it's because he's worked so hard at being likable that's got him in deep trouble.

I mean, really, when your position on global climate change flip-flops inside of six months because polling says it should, you've doubled down on confusion. I think voters, even Republicans, can respect a man who stands on at least one principle that disagrees with them. He had such a magnificent financing advantage that he could have suffered on an issue that even FOX has backpedalled from.

Add to that image the whole Bain background, and Romney now comes across as a snake-oil salesman, a man who wants to build a monorail for no other reason than Shelbyville is going to get one.

Still, it's sad that even before a single word has been uttered in Tampa to frighten away the sane folks of America, Romney has already seen his chances of winning the presidency dwindle to next to nothing, or slightly higher than the Mets' chances of winning this year's World Series.

This country is due for a good talk about the future and issues, and it would be nice to hear some Republican input, rather than a "Don't Blame Me! I Voted For Kolob" chant.

(Cross-posted to Simply Left Behind.)

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