Friday, November 30, 2012 —
Why did Romney win?
Well, of course, he didn’t. But it was close. And if he had won, how would the experts be explaining it?
Maybe like this:
First Debate. Romney’s surprising and convincing win over a lackluster Obama turned the campaign around. It destroyed the old maxim that “debates don’t change election results.” It may not have been a knockout blow, but like Muhammad Ali’s win over Sonny Liston in 1964, it gave Romney an aura of a fighting “champ.”
The “Etch A Sketch” maneuver. Romney executed a transformation from a hardline conservative primary contestant to a moderate general election candidate that old-line Republican voters could support. And he did it deftly, at the last minute, before Democrats could do anything other than complain and after Republican conservatives had committed to him.
Dealing with House Republicans. By persuading people that he could bring the House and Senate together for some kind of practical response to the deficit emergency, Romney took votes from people who otherwise would have preferred Obama, but thought congressional Republicans would never deal with him.
Winning a large majority of the biggest voting bloc. Although most of the talk during the campaign was about Obama’s overwhelming support from African American and Latino voters, Romney built on his solid support from the largest, by far, voting bloc — whites. Demographic trends favor Democrats in the long run. But today’s majority — whites — can still deliver an election to a candidate who gains their favor.
Money. The barrage of television ads purchased by Republican independent political committees moved enough last-minute deciders in the swing states to make the difference in close races.
Primary seasoning. Common wisdom says that this year’s Republican primary debates and opposition messaging damaged Rom-ney for the fall campaign. On the other hand, he was stronger and better prepared for a hard campaign than Obama was, who did not know what a hard knock was until the first debate.
Economy. Romney wisely never outlined a plan for dealing with the economy, preferring simply to declare that his record of economic success was better than Obama’s. This widespread, but unproven, conclusion that Romney was better than Obama on the economy garnered votes from people who disagreed with him about women’s reproductive iss-ues, health care reform, foreign policy and other important issues.
Romney’s fortress in the south and west. Although conventional wisdom em-phasized Obama’s safe states, Romney had locks on a large bloc of southern and western states, in which he did not need to spend a single minute or a single dime to win. That freed him to challenge in some of Obama’s safe states as well as to devote more resources in the crucial swing states where he won the election.
Gaining grudging respect. Although Romney never overcame the likability barrier, voters came to admire his public service record, strong family loyalty and the ethical personal life he lived in conformity with the tenets of his Mormon faith. The seal of approval from Billy Graham gave any remaining skeptics license to vote for Romney.
Voter intimidation. The dark side of Romney’s victory came from successful efforts to discourage likely Obama supporters from voting. Shortened early voting periods, real and rumored new voter ID requirements, inadequate election re-sources in minority pre-cincts: all made just enough difference in close states to give Romney the edge.
Benghazi. Although not the October Surprise that Romney tried to make it, the Benghazi tragedy and its aftermath created doubts about Obama’s anti-terrorist credentials, competence and credibility.
One regret. About the surprising loss to Obama in North Carolina, the Romney campaign explained, “The resources we moved from there to other swing states were key to our overall victory. We make no apology for that decision.”
Friday, November 30, 2012 —
Why did Romney win?
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Read others’ views to be better informed, decide for yourself
“I don’t read The Washington Post. That is not where I get my ideas.”
This isn’t medical marijuana
As state legislators debated allowing the use of an extract from marijuana plants to treat seizure disorders over the past couple of weeks, it was evident that social conservatives – there are many of them in the General Assembly – felt a tinge of unease about it, even as almost every one of them voted yes.
Friends and contentment
Last week I made my annual trip up the mountain to Sparta. My friends have a secluded home near a babbling brook. Their home and property are a haven for peace. It’s a two-plus hour ride to their home that doesn’t feel that long because I look so forward to my time with this great couple. When I arrive, the conversation seems to pick up right where we left it the last time we saw each other.
Thanks for the honest deed
I would like to thank the person that found my wallet in the parking lot of Harris Teeter on July 23 and turned it in to the Albemarle Police.
Don't judge mothers with messy homes
I was building shelves in my garage when a neighbor girl, one of my 4-year-old daughter's friends, approached me and said, "I just saw in your house. It's pretty dirty. Norah's mommy needs to clean more."
We need your help
Hurray for the Albemarle City Council. Council plans to battle N.C. Department of Transportation’s ranking of all 13 projects in Stanly County to the bottom of their priority list. Council is setting up petitions in various city buildings for citizens to sign.
Council asks veterans to seek office
The terms of office for the leaders of the Stanly County Veterans Council ended June 30. A call is being sent to veterans council members requesting candidates for the four elective offices of the council. A meeting has been set for 6:30 p.m. Aug. 12 at the DAV building. All council members are urged to attend.
The gains and gaps in our economy
Twice a year, I pull out my cloudy crystal ball and attempt to make some predictions about the direction and pace of the North Carolina economy. I just finished my latest effort and, as usual, the results are a combination of pluses and minuses.
Yellow journalism takes on new form, people are dumber for it
Time to get on the soapbox for a few minutes.
Let me clear my throat. Eh ... hem!
People are dumb.
Special election adds to the mix
RALEIGH – A busy slate of judicial elections this November got even busier recently when Judge John Martin of the N.C. Court of Appeals announced his retirement.
A special statewide election to fill Martin’s seat will be added to the general election ballot, joining the four N.C. Supreme Court seats and three N.C. Court of Appeals races already slated for this fall.
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