Matthews: Do Romney’s voters really want to elect him, or just see Obama lose?

Updated
Matthews: Do Romney's voters really want to elect him, or just see Obama lose?
Matthews: Do Romney's voters really want to elect him, or just see Obama lose?

Let me finish tonight with the stranger. I’m talking about the man Republicans are planning to nominate for president of the United States. 

When you examine the new poll numbers compiled by NBC News and the Wall Street Journal, you come up with an amazing fact, a cold reality of this political season. It’s that less than one in six American voters — about 15 percent — wants to see Mitt Romney president. The rest intend to vote, not on Romney’s merits, but on what they think of President Obama. They’ll vote either for the President or against him. Romney is simply the only option. 

What does this say about the kind of campaign Romney has waged, is waging? People know nothing about the person himself, nor is he likely to make himself better known. The way it is, few people knowing much about him is the way he wants it. He wants the spotlight on Obama, not him.  

It seems to be working so far. Romney’s right there in a fairly tight match-up with an incumbent president. Most people will vote for him not on the fact of who he is, but on the fact of who his rival is. 

Will this last? Will some Americans walk right into the voting booth intent on voting for a guy still hiding under the covers? Will they entrust this country to a candidate who has made himself the man behind the curtain?

Nixon did this in 1968. It worked then because the country was unable to vote for the riot-torn Democrats, unable to back a party stuck in Vietnam, stuck in the “fight” over Vietnam. 

I think we live in more hopeful times. We want the best president we can get, not the one who’s not the other, not the one who hides because he thinks who he is works against him.

Mitt Romney, Barack Obama and Hardball Let Me Finish

Matthews: Do Romney's voters really want to elect him, or just see Obama lose?

Updated