The Romney campaign is in serious trouble and Republicans are starting to freak out in very public ways. Andrew Sullivan did a little run down last night.
Many in the Republican establishment are already starting to dumb all their problems on Romney and those who "forced" him (Erick Erickson here) on the GOP. As if Rick Perry, Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum, or Herman Cain were perfectly acceptable choices any one of whom would be currently cleaning Obama's clock.
Last week Kevin Drum confronted these Republican revisionists by reminding them that Mitt Romney was by a wide margin agreed to be their best candidate seeking the nomination,
He was, without much question, the most electable of the primary bunch and the toughest opponent for Barack Obama. He was disciplined, well-funded, and had a moderate background that appealed to independents. He was, in short, the very best the Republicans had to offer in the year 2012.This was not a fantasy, either. It was an accurate assessment. Romney was the best they had. The very best.The Republican party has done this to themselves by allowing a take over of their party by Southern political extremists and fostering an intellectual closed loop that filters out all facts that don't support their position.
Let that sink in for a bit.
If you want one person to blame, blame Karl Rove. It actually started with Newt Gingrich, but Rove took it nationwide. With a page from his mentor's playbook, Rove has been the biggest Republican figure of the last 12 years who made a conscious choice not run on issues and to demonize and ridicule opponents so that voters found them unacceptable.
The Republican party has spent the last 12 years denying science, demonizing their opponents as people who "hate" America, want to "destroy" America and/or "destroy" our American way of life. Democrats are Godless traitors who want to turn the country into a communist or Muslim state and kill grandma for using too much health care but give free health care to all non-whites all of whom are in this country illegally.
A steady and endless diet of hate-mongering, environmental denialism and anti-intellectualism has driven young voters, college educated voters, moderate conservative voters and non-white voters from the party leaving only an angry, bitter and uneducated white base who honestly believe the very survival of America is at stake in every election and who demand extreme positions from their candidates which in turn makes them unelectable outside of carefully gerrymandered congressional districts.
The fear of Sharia law is a perfect example. The Republican legislature and Governor of Oklahoma have passed a law banning Sharia law while Republican legislatures in Arizona, Florida, Louisiana, S Carolina, Tennessee and Utah (notice a pattern?) have proposed Sharia bans pending. They are fringe figures you say? Speaker Newt Gingrich (one of the GOP luminaries who would be killing Obama right now) has demanded a Federal ban of Sharia, "I believe Shariah is a mortal threat to the survival of freedom in the United States and in the world as we know it.”
Karl Rove loves to call himself 'the architect' and this is what he has spent the last 12 years building. A radicalized GOP that doesn't understand that they are on the wrong side of the real issues mainstream voters care about.
Paul Ryan's acceptance speech at the GOP Convention is a perfect example of a party intellectually barren. Ryan has spent his entire adult life in an ideological cocoon where 'facts' are simply made up out of whole cloth and any dissent is beat into silence. Then Ryan gives his first national speech containing one lie after another and is stunned when a national media confronts him for the first time in his political life with reality.
Just like 2008, the Republican party is already learning the wrong lessons from this election cycle setting the groundwork for yet another defeat in 2016.
It was all fun and games when this angry mob was attacking Democrats --when American hero and civil rights legend John Lewis was spit on by tea party protesters as they screamed 'nigger' at him.
Now this angry mob is turning on the GOP and here we are.