Recently, I said this to a friend “Mitt Romney is perpetually one sentence away from destroying his campaign.” Mittens proved me right this week. More on that downstream.
Here’s what’s of note now: Romney’s blunder has barely been touched by the mainstream media. This is more interesting than the blunder itself. Coverage of Romney hasn’t been glowing, but it hasn’t been horrendous either. It’s mostly been silly with a whiff of desperation. A “serious” piece showed up in the Washington Post about an ugly Romney high school prank that apparently didn’t bother the now deceased “victim”. The story itself bothered the family of the man pranked far more than the prank. It’s hard to imagine the same story surfacing in 2008 without weeks of breathless follow ups about Romney’s monstrous – MONSTROUS!!! – behavior!
Of course, Obama’s team won’t let tales of Bain Capital’s allegedly brutal treatment of workers die. No one seems to care and the blow back has been substantial. Unlike 2008 the old guard media is not taking its cues from Chicago. Yet.
Thus far, coverage of Romney is perfunctory which in many ways perfectly reflects his campaign since he became the presumptive nominee: Perfunctory. Romney is saying what he excepted to say, has yet to announce an animating core theme, and spends much of his time raising money. Romney’s campaign is cautious, another solid modifier for the MSM’s coverage of it – cautious. This invites the obvious questions. Has the media turned on Obama? Or: Have they realized how obviously pro – Obama they’ve been and plan on pulling the trigger on Romney later in the cycle?
I do know that Romney announcing in Iowa that the Federal Government ought to cut first responders is a political blunder of the same magnitude as Obama’s recent blunder. It may be that the media was so preoccupied with Obama’s gaffe that Romney’s was missed. Perhaps Romney’s goof will be rolled out in the upcoming week. It was a stupid remark. Beyond stupid. And exactly the kind of remark that plagued him during the primaries. I’m moderately shocked that I’ve not seen more blue-in-the-face MSNBC anchors. So far the response has come from the Obama campaign, not its media satellites.
Both Obama and Romney made mistakes this week that will haunt their campaigns. Is the media going soft on Romney? Or are they just – finally- sick of Obama?