Exit polls and post election polls from the 2012 election explain exactly why Mitt Romney lost to President Barack Obama.
Both conservatives and liberals sometimes have a hard time understanding that people vote for and against candidates for all kinds of reasons, not all of them ideological.
In Romney's case, his upper class, executive-type personality appears to have alienated many split-ticket voters who vote for some Republicans and some Democrats.
In a national exit poll used by CNN and other media, one of the many questions asked of voters was, "What is the most important quality of a presidential candidate?" The results were:
29% Vision for future
27% Shares my values
21% Cares about people
18% Strong leader
Amazingly, Romney came out ahead in three of the four categories, but ended up with only 45.27% in the exit poll--he actually did a little better, 47.28%, in the election--because he did extremely poorly in the category of "cares about people."
Here are the results for the three categories where Romney did well:
Vision for the future
Shares my values
So, with numbers like that, how could Romney possibly lose the election? Here are the astounding results for Cares about people:
Those horrible results doomed his candidacy. While Romney is undoubtedly impressive in board rooms and other business meetings, that kind of upper-class authority figure is unlikely to win presidential elections.
If Romney's internal polls showed a similar vulnerability, that may explain why the candidate gave such an odd speech at the Republican National Convention in Tampa. A previous issue of this newsletter stated:
Romney gave an unusual acceptance speech, largely content free. With very little editing, the speech could have been given by almost any Democrat.
The speech told personal stories about Romney's background and family. And it lamented the poor state of the economy, which any non-incumbent would do running against a president who could be tied to high unemployment.
It may be that Romney was attempting to come across as a "nice guy," so he tried to sound friendly, told family stories, and avoided issues as much as possible.
But he wasn't going to win a personality contest with Obama. Rather than get into a game that he was destined to lose, Romney should have emphasized exactly what he would do to revive the weak economy.
If Romney's plan was different from what Obama was doing and sounded plausible, it is possible many voters might have said to themselves, "Well, I don't like Romney too much, but he knows the business world really well and seems to have some good ideas for getting the economy growing and putting people back to work. I'll give him a chance."
Paul Bedard of the Washington Examiner substantiated this point in reporting on a post election poll by the Winston Group. The analysis contained a sharp critique of the Romney campaign, which failed to explain how the economy would improve under the Republican candidate.
As a result, "Romney bungled his economic message so badly that he made President Obama's juggling of high unemployment and historic deficits look better than what the Republican nominee was offering."
The article also stated:
Winston said that while the economy was the number one issue, Romney fumbled it by making the election a referendum on Obama…By failing to lay out a clear economic solution, Romney lost a chance at winning more votes from women, younger voters, and Hispanics, even though the economy was their biggest issue.
Writing in ConservativeHQ.com, Richard A. Viguerie reports on a recent speech by Senator-elect Ted Cruz (R-TX) (pictured) to the American Principles Project in which Romney's 47% remark was cited as very damaging:
"In Cruz's analysis, the story we conveyed to millions of voters that 47 percent of Americans are stuck in a static world and that Republicans don't care about them.
"As Cruz wisely pointed out, when we embraced that 47 percent comment, we also embraced 'the Democrat notion that there is a fixed and static pie. The rich are the rich, the poor are the poor, and all that matters is redistributing from one to the other.'
"Could there be an idea more antithetical to American principles and the optimistic conservatism of Ronald Reagan?
"'Nobody is going to vote for you if they think you don't like them,' noted Cruz."
Therein explains the reason the Romney campaign was unsuccessful.
To win back the White House in 2016, the GOP should nominate populist conservative candidates for the presidency and vice presidency with working class backgrounds who sincerely care about people.
The previous What's Happening with Conservatives and the Tea Party: GOP Lost 174 State Legislative Seats
The previous What's Happening with Seniors Benefits: Liberals Oppose Increasing Medicare Eligibility Age
Previous issues of both newsletters.
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