The Right Opinion

Don't Blame Romney

By Ann Coulter · Nov. 8, 2012

We spent billions of dollars and billions of words on an election to switch from President Obama, a Democratic Senate and a Republican House to President Obama, a Democratic Senate and a Republican House.

Every election predictor was wrong, except one: Incumbents usually win.

Republicans have taken out a sitting president only once in the last century, and that was in 1980 when Ronald Reagan beat Jimmy Carter. Sadly, Reagan's record remains secure.

The Democrats ran up against the incumbency problem in 2004. The landslide election for Democrats in 2006 suggests that Americans were not thrilled with Republicans around the middle of the last decade. And yet in 2004, President George W. Bush beat John Kerry more handily than Obama edged past Romney this week.

Democratic candidate John Kerry won 8 million more votes than Al Gore did in 2000, and he still couldn't win. All the Democrats' money, media, Bush Derangement Syndrome and even a demoralized conservative base couldn't trump the power of incumbency in 2004.

After supporting Mitt Romney in 2008, some of you may recall, I ran off with New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie midway through Obama's first term for precisely that reason: The near-impossibility of beating an incumbent president. Christie seemed like the kind of once-in-a-lifetime star who could pull a Reagan upset against an incumbent president.

But I was wrong. Romney was the perfect candidate, and he was the president this country needed right now. It's less disheartening that a president who wrecked American health care, quadrupled gas prices, added $6 trillion to the national debt and gave us an 8 percent unemployment rate can squeak out re-election than that America will never have Romney as our president.

Indeed, Romney is one of the best presidential candidates the Republicans have ever fielded. Blaming the candidate may be fun, but it's delusional and won't help us avoid making the same mistakes in the future.

Part of the reason incumbents win is that they aren't forced to spend half the election year being battered in primaries. Obama started running anti-Romney ads in Ohio before the Republican primaries were even over. Noticeably, Romney's negatives were sky-high in Ohio, but not in demographically similar states like Pennsylvania.

One of Obama's first acts in office was to bail out the auto industry to help him in states he'd need in the upper Midwest, such as Michigan and Ohio. He visited Ohio nearly 50 times, while not visiting lots of other states even once. Obama was working Ohio from the moment he became president. Meanwhile, Romney didn't wrap up the primaries until the end of May.

A little less time beating up our candidate in the primaries so that he could have started campaigning earlier would have helped. In this regard, please remember that no mere House member is ever going to be elected president. Most of them harm their political careers by running. (Where's Thaddeus McCotter these days? Michele Bachmann is fighting for her political life.)

Please stop running. You're distracting us from settling on an actual nominee.

No one can be blamed for the hurricane that took the news off the election, abruptly halting Romney's momentum, but Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock can be blamed on two very specific people: Todd Akin and Richard Mourdock.

The last two weeks of the campaign were consumed with discussions of women's “reproductive rights,” not because of anything Romney did, but because these two idiots decided to come out against abortion in the case of rape and incest.

After all the hard work intelligent pro-lifers have done in changing the public's mind about a subject the public would rather not think about at all, these purist grandstanders came along and announced insane positions with no practical purpose whatsoever, other than showing off.

While pro-lifers in the trenches have been pushing the abortion positions where 90 percent of the country agrees with us – such as bans on partial birth abortion, and parental and spousal notification laws – Akin and Mourdock decided to leap straight to the other end of the spectrum and argue for abortion positions that less than 1 percent of the nation agrees with.

In order to be pro-life badasses, they gave up two easy-win Republican Senate seats.

No law is ever going to require a woman to bear the child of her rapist. Yes, it's every bit as much a life as an unborn child that is not the product of rape. But sentient human beings are capable of drawing gradations along a line.

Just because I need iron to live doesn't mean I have to accept 100,000 milligrams, which will kill me. If we give the guy who passed bad checks a prison furlough, that doesn't mean we have to give one to Willie Horton. I like a tablespoon of sugar in my coffee, but not a pound.

The overwhelming majority of people – including me – are going to say the law shouldn't force someone who has been raped to carry the child. On the other hand, abortion should be illegal in most other cases.

Is that so hard for Republicans to say?

Purist conservatives are like idiot hipsters who can't like a band that's popular. They believe that a group with any kind of a following can't be a good band, just as show-off social conservatives consider it a mark of integrity that their candidates – Akin, Mourdock, Sharron Angle, Christine O'Donnell – take wildly unpopular positions and lose elections.

It was the same thing with purist libertarian Barry Goldwater, who – as you will read in my book, “Mugged: Racial Demagoguery From the Seventies to Obama” – nearly destroyed the Republican Party with his pointless pursuit of libertarian perfection in his vote against the 1964 Civil Rights Act.

I like a band that sells NO albums because it proves they have too much integrity to sell out.

We have a country to save. And just as the laws of elections generally mean the incumbent president wins, they also mean the party out of the White House typically stages a big comeback in midterm elections. BIG. Don't blow it with purist showoffs next time, Republicans.


View all comments


Ragweed in West Virginia said:

I just hope this doesn't mean that I have to listen to another four years of fawning over Christie...... Because, I won't.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 8:17 AM

LibertyIsUS in Arlington, VA said:

"Every election predictor was wrong, except one: Incumbents usually win."

That is a misstatement, Ms. Coulter.

In the last 40 years of elections three incumbents LOST their re-election bids: Ford, Carter and Bush the First.

Romney lost because he did not press his advantage. He had Obama on the ropes after the first election and Romney let his rope-a-dope his way back into the campaign in the subsequent debates and the weeks pre-Sandy.

Two issues he should have pressed, AND DIDN'T, were Benghazi and Sandy! WHY?

The first shows how naive this suit is internationally, and the second shows how he doesn't care to people who are already in the tank for him! Is anyone not yet convinced that New Jersey and New York only vote democrat? Homes on Staten Island lie in ruins and electricty is not yet restored and still voters looked to the freebies promised by the candy man.

And what did Romney do?

Nothing Ann. He never pressed his one advantage over this pretender.

The only thing left to observe of our country after 2012 is its death rattle. Thank you Mr. Romney for reminding us of our cowardice.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 8:19 AM

OhGosch in New York State said:

I do blame Romney. When he could at least tried to "appear" conservative he continued to be a moderate(liberal). As usual Republicans think they need to be democrat lite to win.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 8:33 AM

Conservative Commentator in Fairfax, Virginia said:

So blame someone else? Obviously, logic dictates, the candidate who lost *IS* to blame. Obviously the wrong candidate was chosen.

Romney got 2.5 million less votes than McCain.

Ann, I'm sorry you join liberals in blaming someone else.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 8:37 AM

Robinius in Broomfield, Colorado replied:

I think we might blame the estimated 3 million "conservatives" who stayed home because Romney wasn't their idea of a "perfect" candidate. And also the 1.2 million who voted for Gary Johnson, etc. They made a statement i guess, I hope they enjoy 4 more years of Obama.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 10:12 PM

JJStryder in Realville said:

I agree with Ann's assessment on Romney. My only questions are why didn't he hammer Obama harder in the last two debates? Why they agreed to only liberal debate commentators? Why no outreach to Rush, Levin and the rest of the conservative voices out there? He shouldn't have been playing nice when rougher strategies needed to combat all the misinformation.
Bottom line though, the message was rejected not the messenger. Americans think we have endless amounts of goodies to hand out and now they want some for themselves and they truly believe Obama and the democrats are the ones to give it to them. The words "we're broke" haven't been painful or clear enough yet. But they will be....they will be!

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 10:51 AM

Rod in USA replied:

Concur, JJ. Sean Hannity had Frank Luntz on yesterday afternoon and he made some brilliant comments about Romney's lost opportunity to make his point more forceefully, eloquently, convincingly. Romney was the right man with the right plan with the right message. Americans who voted Obama were too stupid to understand the plan and Romney was not capable of reaching them.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 10:57 AM

Rod in USA said:

I am a bit torn. While I am conservative, I DO think there is some logic to any assertion that says a true conservative cannot win, or that Republicans need to appear moderate (Ronald's point above about "Democrat lite"). Why? Bill O'Reilly said it best, to paraphrase: "People want "stuff", and they want "stuff" for free. President Obama gave them "stuff", and we now have too many people getting "free" "stuff" to win the election."

This goes to the 47% comments. If you are a 47%-er, you resent any implication that you're "free-loading" and are not entitled to "feee stuff", and in your mind, you are a victim of either "the rich" or circumstance, so you reject the notion that you should have to work for it.

So therein lies the problem. The argument about how we can create an environment for you to be independent and successful (to pay for your own way) is not enticing to large portions of the 47%. They vieiew that as "it's just a scheme to help the rich." And our educational system has made it impossible for them to think critically to understand the ages old argument about being taught to fish vs. being given a single fish. Besides, our culture has been changed from one of pride in working to one of pride in receiving. Better to demand a continuous stream of fish because "it's not my fault! Now shut up, you're interrupting my texting on my free smartphone while I watch cable TV and eat bon-bons".

No, not all of the 47% are free-loaders like that. But enough of them are just happy to either vote their "feelings" or vote to continue the status quo.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 10:55 AM

JTG in Indiana said:

Mourdock would have beaten Donnelly if it weren't for his comment. However, you have a pricipled man in Mourdock and it's too bad we encourage politicians to lie for the sake of election and then wind up with someone who changed positions often. Donnelly voted for Obamacare. Why wasn't that more of a factor than Mourdock's comment?

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 11:48 AM

Jeremy in CA said:

Go read Michael Reagan's current column. It's much closer to the truth on Romney than this one.

While every thinking person would agree that Akin's (especially) and Mourdock (to a much lesser extent) are idiots, that doesn't excuse Romney's pathetic performance. Outside of one good debate, which was greatly aided by a brain-dead Obama, there we nothing worthwhile in the entire Romney campaign. For some unknown reason, Romney went into a "prevent defense" after his win in the first debate, instead of pressing for a break out. That might have made sense if he had a big lead, but he was still trailing in critical swing states. But, instead of coasting to victory, he coasted to defeat.

Would Romney have been a good president? Better than Obama, surely, but that's not saying much. Given Romney's risk-averse campaign style, I suspect he'd have been a lot more like Bush-the-Elder, rather than Reagan.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 12:01 PM

Patrick Henry in Smithville said:

Ann, this time your "blame game" is way off the mark. The blame can justifiably be placed on many things, but Senate candidates Akin and Mourdock are among them. We can blame a blatantly partisan media, we can blame a hurricane or Chris Christie, we can blame Romney himself for not "going for the kill" with the Benghazi scandal in the last debate, and we can blame the likely voter fraud (that occurs because of our refusal to instill control measures now technologically possible but politically incorrect).

But more than anything else, the blame has to go to an electorate that has been brainwashed for several generations now in God-hating government schools with the vile ideas that socialism is good and free markets are bad, it's ok to kill babies, the earth is their mother, that marriage means whatever you want it to mean, and the there is no such thing as American exceptionalism. You would do this nation a great favor by using your soapbox to encourage parents and grandparents to get their kids out of these indoctrination centers called government schools. Until parents pull their kids out in droves, we stand very little chance of saving this nation.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 12:02 PM

wjm in Colorado replied:

Public education is now the ultimate form of child abuse.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 12:05 PM

Patrick Henry in Smithville said:

I made a bad mistake in my post above. The second sentence should read "but Senate candidates Akin and Mourdock are NOT among them."

Akin's comment may have contained a factual error about how a woman's body responds to trauma, but the spirit of his comment was to defend and save lives, and that is a noble and courageous stand to take. And Mourdock spoke undeniable truth - God is the author of all life, and nowhere in scripture does God ever say He's the author of all life "except" that life conceived from rape.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 12:11 PM

Greg in Millersport, OH replied:

Actually, Akin was correct despite his clumsy choice of words. You can read about sperm "immunity" even on the National Institute of Health web site. It is why pregnancy from rape occurs less often than pregnancy from committed relationships.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 9:35 PM

David Thompson in Bellville, TX said:

"Don't Blame Romney"
No; he made it clear that he was and is and always will be a mushy moderate.
Blame Coulter - she tried for five years to conceal that fact.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 12:51 PM

Tad Petrie in Westerville, Ohio said:

Ms.Coulter, Actually, I CAN blame Romney! At his core, Mitt Romney is a "moderate" Republican which actually means LIBERAL Republican, I'm not saying he's a bad guy, but he IS a liberal Republican and that is why the GOP backed him! Now why do I primarily blame Romney? He was the guy out front and he LOST! He could've come clean with the American people, said, "Yes I have been a liberal Republican but I realize the mistakes I have made and I am embracing and following true conservatism because that is the only way we are going to fix the damage Barack Obama has done to our country!" Then he should've gone for Obama's throat during the campaign and he would've wiped the floor with him!

But he didn't, he followed the liberal establishment GOP's orders and he LOST! So yes, I can and will blame Romney for losing because he did not have to lose!

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Ken in Simi Valley, CA said:

"Don't Blame Romney"; Sorry Ann. Mitt is to blame. He was at the head of the ticket. He was in charge of his campaign. I for one will not allow the "blame Bush" (or anyone else) syndrome to explain the loss.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 2:11 PM

Abu Nudnik in Toronto said:

It's a shocking loss and I fear Ann may be right. If the democrats take the House in midterms the damage will be severe.

Let's face it, the narcissist in chief has lots of company inside the beltway and I see attention-grabbing Akinizing to be of the same cloth as Obamaniacal self-love and self-loathing. Read his book to see why he despises Romney so much: He had a father who loved him. Romney came to give, not to take, and it's tragic that a man of such high moral fiber will not be president.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 2:38 PM

billy396 in ohio replied:

"If the democrats take the House in midterms the damage will be severe." I hate to tell you this, but the damage is already as severe as it needs to be to completely destroy any chance of maintaining a Constitutional Republic in this country. Obozo will now finish off our country, appoint insanely liberal, activist Supreme Court and other appeals court judges, (who will curse our country for generations to come, if not forever), and complete his quest to turn the United States into a Socialist country. Our country will no longer be the one, true bright light and strongest country in the world, all due to the actions of this one traitor Barack Obozo, the great pretender to the throne. Just think of all of the openly unconstitutional acts that he's already done, the federal court rulings that he's ignored, the federal laws that he's ignored. And that's when he had to worry about getting reelected. He's now completely off the chain and will finish offf our country. The Republicans in Congress are nutless cowards who won't dare stop the flow of cash to this madman's pet projects. I, for one, am glad that I won't live too many more years, because I don't want to witness the death of the greatest system of government that this planet has ever seen, or ever will see. Obama is worse than Hitler, worse than Mao, worse tham Marx. He's a con-man lawyer from the most corrupt city in this country and he has conned his way into a position that will allow him, with the cover of the traitors in the media, to destroy freedom in America.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 8:59 PM

Janice in Northville, MI said:

If you need some comic relief after the dreary election results, check out my song "Socialism Stinketh" on YouTube. Let's spread the song, not the wealth.

Thursday, November 8, 2012 at 6:16 PM