Why Mitt Romney Lost

With election day 2012 over for almost a week, many are still reeling from the outcome. What I am about to say is merely my opinion. I make no claims to be an expert on politics. I’m an observer. There are a few reasons I believe Mitt Romney did not win, and here they are.

I believe Mitt Romney was too confident, too naive, in thinking he would win the election. He dismissed the polls, believing people would vote against Barack Obama solely on the status of the economy. He did not expect so many people would go to the polls. He thought the number would be lower than it was in 2008. I rarely watch FOX news, but when I did briefly tune in to Bill O’ Reilly one night, a couple of guests predicted a Romney landslide. They were certain he would carry both Florida and Ohio, along with other key swing states. No doubt he listened to this, and believed it wholeheartedly.

Gov. Romney played it “too safe”. When it came to serious issues where the President was weak, he backed away instead of hammering them the way Ronald Reagan did with Jimmy Carter in 1980. The tragedy in Libya is a prime example. There was also Obama’s decision to go on “The View” instead of meeting with the U.N. Paul Ryan pointed this out in the VP debate, but he did not. When he received a question during the second debate from an African American man saying he was disillusioned with the Obama administration after having voted for him in 2008, he did not seize the opportunity to note not only the question itself, but why he asked it. That one question could have made his campaign more than anything.

Romney did not fully take his running mate into account. Barack Obama is more than the President. He is a superstar, a pop culture icon. He crooned Al Green in public, was interviewed by “Inside Edition” and MTV, hangs out with Jay-Z and Springsteen. He readily goes on talk shows, from The Daily Show to The Tonight Show. He spoke with Rolling Stone magazine, and listed 25 things we did not know about him in US Weekly. Do these things make a good or effective President? Of course not, but they do grab the public’s attention. He seems more real and down to earth. He’s the cool guy. In comparison to Obama, he was stiff and rigid. Instead, it was his warm and gracious wife, Ann who stood toe to toe with the women of “The View”. He canceled, stating a scheduling conflict. Ann did all the legwork on her own. She appeared on The Tonight Show, Rachel Ray, and co-hosted GMA. He did appear with her on The Early Show several months ago, and on Live with Kelly and Michael. The two always struck me as being very much in love after 43 years of marriage. They remind me of one of those sitcom couples, except they are real. That closeness should have been exposed more. It was a mistake to stay out of the spotlight so much, particularly when running against someone who plays it up extensively.

After Hurricane Sandy struck, Romney was forced to the back burner by the media. Obama was front and center, even receiving kudos from New Jersey Governor Christie, a Republican. This was not Romney’s fault. However, had he previously crafted a more solid public image for himself, it would not have mattered, or had such of a damaging effect.

Lastly, the Republican party’s focus is very misconstrued. They continue to overlook minorities, single women, and young people- a very large part of our society. If you want their vote, they have to feel included and respected. Their issues should be addressed with genuine concern, not treated as a nuisance or an after thought. They have to expand their outreach beyond the wealthy, white men, and married couples. Yes, he carried the majority of the white vote, but it wasn’t enough by itself.

I have enormous compassion for Mitt Romney, his family, and the Ryans. Word has it they really thought they were going to win, and the defeat which they suffered came out of nowhere. He was reportedly “shell shocked”. An estimated $25,000 was spent on a fireworks display which did not have the chance to be used. His concession speech was beyond gracious. I teared up a bit as I watched it. Later, his  website streamed Obama’s victory speech live. I’ve always thought Gov Romney was misunderstood quite a bit.  A lot of people saw him as having been born with a silver spoon in his mouth, a high school senior who bullied a classmate, someone who is a part of a controversial religion. However, I think there’s a lot more to Mitt Romney than we realize. I wish we had gotten the chance to see it, to have known him better.

Whatever the future holds for Gov. Romney, I wish him well.

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~ by kmnnz on November 12, 2012.

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