The dust has hardly settled from Election Day, but the post-silly season fingerpointing has already begun...and it's seldom a pretty sight. Candidates who crisscrossed the country, convinced that they had the winning combination to win the voters' hearts and minds, are crushed: oh, my God...how could they elect that other idiot? But I won those debates! I worked my @$# off! I slept badly in Holiday Inns for 24-plus months, for...for...THIS? J#s@s H. Judas Mother-o'-Mary F#ershluggin' you-know-what Kee-rrrrrrrrrrrrrrr-ist!
The handlers aren't far behind: you shoulda done this, you shoulda done that...if ifs and buts were candy and nuts, we'd all have a Merry Christmas...should coulda woulda tacked center, if we'd had the chance, blah-blah-blah...the media were out to nail us, yada-yada-yada...and Mitt Romney's inner circle is no exception. How could formerly moderate Mitt possibly lose to an incumbent struggling to overcome the toxic fumes of an 8 percent unemployment rate, a cranky electorate, and a lousy economy?
As a public service, we at Ramen Noodle Nation present an economy tour of what the GOP's top movers and shakers have been telling the Fourth Estate, as the smoky plumes drift over the Charles River, past the crumbling ruins of Uncle Mitt's second (and presumably final) failure to win the White House...just so you don't have to read it all, OK? All right, here we go, then... --The Reckoner
1. Forget The Buck, It's The Crazy Truck That Stops Here: "Rick Santorum rejected the separation of church and state. Newt Gingrich challenged the notion of judicial supremacy. Michele Bachmann claimed the government had been infiltrated by radical Muslims. Donald Trump refused to recognize the validity of Obama’s birth certificate. Rick Perry wanted to take down more parts of the federal government than he could successfully name. In the debates, the country saw the GOP talking to itself and sounding like a bizarre fringe party, not a responsible governing one." (Slate, "Why Romney Lost," 11/07/12)
2. Hmm, Maybe We Really WERE Better Off Shooting This Particular Messenger: "One top Romney bundler offered this blunt analysis to Politico's Maggie Haberman yesterday, 'We had no message and we gave it to the worst communicator in the world.'" (ABC News: "GOP Asks: What Went Wrong For Romney?", 11/08/12)
3. It's The Welfare Brats' Revenge, Stupid: "Washington Times columnist and National Rifle Association board member Ted Nugent is responding to President Obama's re-election by saying that Americans "voted for economic & spiritual suicide" because Obama will "destroy America." He also referred to Obama's supporters as "subhuman varmint[s]" and "Pimps whores & welfare brats & their soulless supporters." (Media Matters For America: Ted Nugent's Post-Election Freakout: "Subhuman Varmint[s]" Re-Elect Obama To 'Destroy America,'" 11/07/12)
4. Left At The Altar On Cinco De Mayo Day, We Presume?: "Kelly Romney, a distant relative of Mitt Romney's, believes that he could've stopped Romney from damaging his own campaign. 'It's just a real tragedy. I think that he did not connect with us where we could've helped him. I really think it would've made a difference in the election,' Kelly told ABC/Univision as he watched election coverage on Fox News." (ABC News: "Romney's Cousin Says Mitt Failed to Court Latinos," 11/08/12)
5. Maybe He Should Have Reached Under The Couch For Some Spare Change: "But in the eyes of top aides in both campaigns, that early summer period when Mr. Romney was busy fundraising was perhaps the biggest single reason he lost the election. The Obama campaign spent heavily while Mr. Romney couldn't, launched a range of effective attacks on the Republican nominee and drove up voters' negative perceptions of Mr. Romney.
"The problem: Mr. Romney had burned through much of his money raised for the primaries, and by law, he couldn't begin spending his general-election funds until he accepted the GOP nomination late in the summer." (The Wall Street Journal, "How The Race Slipped Away From Romney," 11/08/12)
6. Ohhhh, OK, We Got It: Too Many CH-CH-CH-Changes (INNA David Bowie-Stylee): "His vexing negativity goes hand in hand with an unwillingness to stick with any bedrock beliefs. The Washington Post ran an excellent editorial denouncing Romney's 'contempt' for voters, and his changing his positions radically over the course of his career. As the late Sen. Edward M. Kennedy declared of Romney back in 1994: 'I am pro-choice ... My opponent is multiple-choice.' The line brought down the house in Boston." (The Daily Beast, "Mitt Romney's Personality Problem," 11/05/12)
7. Premature Preparations (Why Denial Ain't Just A River In Egypt) Dept., Take I.: "Another unnamed senior adviser explained that as returns came in and battleground states went into President Barack Obama's Electoral College column, they felt their paths to potential victory narrowing. CBS reports that the campaign was unprepared for this in part because it had ignored polling that showed the races favoring Obama. Instead, it turned to its own internal 'unskewed' polls, which it believed more accurately reflected the situation on the ground. They didn't."
Take II: "...As evidence of the Romney campaign's sincere belief that the former Massachusetts governor would emerge victorious on Tuesday night, the Boston Globe reported Thursday that it had planned to fete Romney's election with an eight-minute display of fireworks over Boston Harbor."
'It was not an intense, grand finale-type of display for eight minutes, but it certainly was a fast-paced show to cap off the evening, if it were necessary,'" Steve Pelkey, the CEO of Atlas Professional Fireworks Displays, told the Globe.
And, Once More (With Feeling), Take III: "Romney also told reporters on his campaign plane earlier this week that while he had written a victory speech, he hadn't prepared concession remarks." (The Huffington Post, "Mitt Romney 'Shellshocked' After Lost Election, Adviser Says"
8. The Incredible Shrinking White Man: "Exit polls showed that Mr. Romney won handily among white Americans—almost six in 10 of them—but lost by breathtaking margins among the nation's increasingly important ethnic groups: By almost 40 percentage points among Hispanics, by almost 50 points among Asians, and by more than 80 points among African-Americans." (The Wall Street Journal, "Tough Loss Leaves GOP At A Crossroads": 11/07/12)
9. This Just In: If You Didn't Support Uncle Mitt, It's Because You (Ahem) Wanted Something, Like, Uh...STUFF: "'Half the country wants free stuff,' O'Reilly said. What is that half like? First he hinted: Latinos, blacks, and maybe women would vote for Obama. Then he got reeeal explicit: 'Obama wins because it's not a traditional America anymore. The white establishment is the minority. People want things.'" (The Atlantic Wire, "The Sad Faces of Fox News on Election Night," 11/06/12)
10. Uhhh...Maybe That Secret Underwear Was Notched A Shade Too Tight: "It's also worth noting that Romney's peers—men who have vied with him on political stages—can't stand him. I mean, it's more than the usual give-and-take, spirited conflict between rivals. Kennedy, famous for having friends and allies on the other side of the aisle, found Romney hard work on a personal level. Sens. John Kerry, Harry Reid, and John McCain—two Democrats and a Republican—are three other senators known to loathe Romney." (The Daily Beast, "Mitt Romney's Personality Problem," 11/06/12)