THERE IS just no contest. Obama’s ad, with Mitt Romney singing off key against a backdrop of his outsourcing records, is devastating. Romney’s ad simply doesn’t work nearly as well; Obama’s singing is terrific and reading the compiled data isn’t timed very well.
This comes at a time when the Romney campaign is faltering badly. David Frum gives the particulars. Frum’s incorrect on one thing. It wasn’t that Romney’s speech at the NAACP was received badly that hurt him, because he could have earned credit for going and delivering a speech.
What Team Romney should have done was pivot to hit Pres. Obama on being a no-show. You can argue that it doesn’t matter, because V.P. Joe Biden was terrific, but a campaign can’t waste this kind of moment. Romney could have said, “At least I went and gave it my best shot, saying what I truly believe.” Romney’s team could have then charged that Barack Obama was taking his African American voter base for granted by not going to speak to them, because he knows he’s got their vote. It’s brash, but it also has the virtue of being absolutely true, to throw a Kissingerism back at Frum.
This is how it works if you know what you’re doing; your campaign has to be able to pivot and hit back with a talking point that resonates, especially when you’re getting pummeled. Instead, as Frum explains in his post, Romney channeled his arrogance and it created a whole new set of problems, people rightly jumping on Romney’s statement that he expected to be booed.
Team Romney has to be a lot better than this to make up for a candidate with very little political talent, who’s hard to relate to, and is not likable to boot. Because they’re up against an experienced machine that knows how to throw a punch and keep on coming and an incumbent President who’s decided he really wants another term.
When you’re faced with the prospect of losing it can concentrate the ego, if nothing else.
Another problem that is rising for Romney is that even Republicans are now calling for Mitt Romney to release more tax returns.
UPDATE: …and the hits just keep on ‘comin’. I’d make a joke about the man who postures that he’s ready to run the presidency, but can’t even get his campaign to follow U.S. copyright laws, but that would be cruel. But seriously, the Romney campaign can’t even get U.S. copyright law right? So sad. Amanda Terkel has the story. (When I initially uploaded it the ad was available.) Whew, Mitt’s suffering from some kind of dog days of summer.