The Obama Hare and Romney the Tortoise
Victor Davis Hanson
The 2012 race has turned into one of Aesop's classic fables. After each new media blitz against the no-frills
Meanwhile, the Romney tortoise, head down on the campaign trail, keeps lumbering along toward the November finish. There is nothing fancy day in and day out -- only the steady plod of a good enough convention, workmanlike speeches that pass muster, a Midwestern vice president nominee who is informed and reliable, and the standard conservative correctives offered to liberal excesses.
We have now gone through Obama's various caricatures of a scary
How does Romney's thick tortoise shell withstand these frenetic assaults as he keeps trudging back to even in the polls?
But now, all the new negative advertising just cloaks Obama in hypocrisy. By the same token, Romney's challenge has always been that he is blandly and predictably straight-arrow. If that normalcy means he cannot give soaring hope and change speeches, it also ensures that casting him as a multifarious sinner is preposterous, and reflects more poorly on the accuser than the intended target.
Obama cannot run on his record of Obamacare, reset foreign policy, Keynesian deficit priming, and wind and solar power in preference to developing fully vast new finds of oil and gas. What ultimately doomed incumbents
In Obama's case, 42 months of 8-percent-plus unemployment, laggard GDP growth,
The current presidential race remains a seesaw battle because for all the advantages of incumbency and the president's charisma, the public is not happy with the Obama administration's record on the economy. And it does not believe -- at least at this juncture -- that Romney is the villain that the Obama campaign has portrayed.
Yet Romney trudges rather than sprints ahead because he is no glib
The country is also not quite ready to confess that it went a little crazy in 2008 and voted for the embarrassing banalities of "hope and change" offered by a little known senator with a thin resume and little national experience. Again, no voter likes to admit that he was led to the polls in a trance by the mellifluous music of a pied piper.
Obama's present paradox is that the more he goes negative against Romney, the less the slurs seem to stick, and the less presidential the self-avowed ethical reformer appears. Yet because the economy is not going to noticeably improve by November, Obama believes he must continue in hopes of discovering a bona fide Romney scandal, or that he must claim the country is threatened abroad and in need of national unity.
Barring a real recovery or a sudden war, the steady, plodding Romney tortoise is ever so slowly winning the race against the flashier -- surging, yet always fading -- Obama hare.
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