Election 2012

If Romney Wins, Here's How It Happened

If Mitt Romney ends this week as President-Elect Romney, it will be for these six reasons.


If Mitt Romney ends this week as President-Elect Romney, it will be because of these six reasons:

"One-term proposition": "If I don't have this done in three years, then there's gonna be a one-term proposition," President Obama told NBC's Matt Lauer in February 2009. He was talking about an economic recovery. As much as President Obama tried either to blame the previous administration or to argue that, bad as things are, it would have been even worse without his actions, the fact remained that the economy—with 7.9 percent unemployment, 2 percent economic growth, and 47 million Americans on food stamps—was just too weak. The president, precisely as he himself had predicted, got the blame.

Peace and prosperity: Incumbents get re-elected in cases of peace and prosperity. Obama didn't deliver the prosperity (please see "one-term proposition," above), and the violent deaths of four Americans in Benghazi, Libya, in an attack launched on September 11 undercut Obama's claim to have delivered peace.

ObamaCare: President Obama thought he was being clever by delaying the full implementation of ObamaCare until 2014, after the election. But the consequence is that benefits the law would provide remain strictly theoretical to many voters. To run successfully against the Republican claim that the law raises premiums, expands bureaucracy, cuts Medicare, and increases taxes, Obama needed a better response than just coverage for 25-year-olds and for those with pre-existing conditions. He needed to show expanded coverage and lower costs for voters and consumers. But under the 2010 health care law, the exchanges and tax credits, which are the key coverage and cost provisions, don't start operating until 2014.

Wisconsin Unions: If Romney's victory includes Wisconsin's electoral votes, it will be a classic case of political irony. If the Wisconsin public sector unions had not gone after Governor Scott Walker in their unsuccessful recall effort, Walker would never have raised all the money he did and built the sophisticated voter lists and turnout operation that he had. If Romney wins Wisconsin, the Walker political ground operation developed in response to the union-initiated recall will be a big part of the reason why. (Another reason is Wisconsin's own Paul Ryan, who will look like a genius vice presidential pick if he succeeds in helping to deliver those electoral votes.)

Taxes: Romney's tax messaging may have been murky to nonexistent at times, but Obama's was so clear that the voters got the point anyway. Voters saw right through Obama's "ask the wealthy to pay a little bit more" formulation and concluded that Obama wanted to raise taxes, while Romney had a plan for a 20 percent rate cut. In American elections, tax-cutters usually beat tax-raisers.

The Tone, Capitalism, and the Electorate: It turns out that a substantial portion of the electorate isn't interested in demonizing successful American businessmen, as President Obama and his campaign have done. It turns out that a lot of voters admire American business success and wish we had more successful entrepreneurs in America, not fewer of them. So much of this campaign was President Obama and his allies attacking Bain Capital (and Wall Street, and insurance companies, and oil companies), and so much of it was Romney defending his career at Bain Capital. It turns out that a majority of American voters are not hostile to capitalism, and they bet that a president with business experience might do a better job of fostering economic growth than has President Obama, who constantly portrayed business as something that Americans need to be protected from.

So those are the explanations for a Romney win, which is how it looks to me the election is headed.

If it goes the other way, and Romney loses and Barack Obama wins, please see my September column, "Why Obama Is Winning," for an explanation.

Explanations are ready, that is, for either outcome. All that's needed now is for the voters to have their say. Happy Election Day.

NEXT: Giuliani blasts FEMA Response, Obama

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  1. Richard Epstein on the Libertarian’s Dilemma and Voting this time around:


  2. If Romney wins, Democrats won’t pay Nate Silver to poll a wet t-shirt contest in Ft. Lauderdale.

    1. Are you sure? Leftists often seem to survive poor performance.

  3. I don’t care if I end up being wrong: I think Romney is going to win.

    The economy matters and the economy sucks and Americans vote out “the guy” when the economy sucks.

    1. A majority of Americans still blame Bush for it though.

      1. Bush will get even less votes than Gary Johnson.

      2. I disagree.

        But I guess we will find out tomorrow.



        1. So you’re saying a healthy majority of Americans are Democratic campaigners?

          1. I am saying a majority do not blame Bush for the current state of the economy.

            1. I was gonna link a poll, but there are so many of them. Just google it.

              1. Won’t link a poll and won’t tell me the Scotch.

                Pretty lame Tony.

                1. Googled “blame bush economy poll”

                  1st result:
                  About two-thirds of Americans believe Republican former U.S. President George W. Bush is responsible for the nation’s struggling economy, with a smaller percentage blaming Democratic President Barack Obama, a Gallup poll showed on Thursday.


                  1. OMFG JOE!!!!!


                    This is what you give me?

                    About 68 percent of the more than 1,000 adults surveyed nationwide said Bush, who left office in January 2009, deserves a “moderate amount” or a “great deal” of the blame for the U.S. economic woes compared to 52 percent who pointed to his successor Obama, the poll found.

                    Fuck an A joe with poll like that where you can blame anyone in government I would blame Bush, blame Obama, blame Clinton and Reagan

              2. It was a hipster indie poll. You’ve probably never heard of it.

                If Obama loses, Tony will be the modern equivalent of the classic “How could McGovern lose? Everybody I know voted for McGovern!”

                1. Hipster Indy polls are called youpoll and run by the Brits.

  4. Gee, and I thought it would be ‘cuz tonight Manchester Mitt will be chanting “cadillac pussy” with Kid Rock, whereas the Big O’s Granite State visit was accompanied by James Taylor croaking out “rock-a-bye sweet baby jane…”
    Something just ain’t right with these pictures.

  5. Romeny just looks like a crook! I mean we already know that if his mouth is moving, he is lying lol


    1. Tagtann, find some new fucking lines, you’ve run that one into the dirt.

    2. If Obama is moving his mouth, he is either reading from the teleprompter or repeating a marxist claim that he learned in his youth

  6. Obama 303 EVs. I’m putting a good bottle of Scotch on this.

    1. Name the scotch or GTFO.

    2. Romney +67.5 – that’s worth a Lagavulin.

    3. I’d sooner bet that Romney tops 300 electoral votes. Do you promise to still be here of Obama loses? Will you abide?

      1. I will always be here. I have always been here.

  7. Romney wins. Not in a landslide, but decisively. And the Senate won’t go Democrat. This is not a prediction, but a threat. … Actually, it’s a libertarian dream.

    1. Four more years of fucktardery you can blame on the entrenched TEAMS, while the economy continues to suffer from whiskey-dick, will only empower people who are sick of the whole Christ-punching charade.

    2. I don’t get it.
      How is socialist repub Executive branch and a crony-cap Senate a libertarian dream?

  8. I can’t even enjoy the NFL game tonight. They’re going to have the two fatheads on during halftime. I’ll use the time to go buy my take-out.

  9. This energy “rebound effect” has important implications for efforts to restrain climate change through conservation. Various studies have suggested that improvements in efficiency could reduce energy consumption enough to cut global carbon dioxide emissions by as much as 25 percent during the http://www.drdrebeatsbydreau.com/ next four decades. But this is a highly controversial area of scholarship.

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