Although the Republican party is still alive, it’s undergoing a full post-mortem. What went wrong in the presidential campaign? Was Mitt Romney simply a poor candidate, and the loss is his fault because he failed to relate to voters? Or was the problem a Party platform that didn’t appeal to the average American voter? Demographics clearly played a key role in this past election, with minorities, women and gays backing President Obama by significant margins.
Karl Rove, the architect of George W. Bush’s victories who was supposed to be the architect of Romney’s, offered his own blunt view in a speech in Erie, Pennsylvania, this week: “Mitt Romney had what I scientifically call a butt-ugly primary.”
Rove himself is also facing post-election backlash. His Super PAC, American Crossroads, collected millions of dollars from wealthy donors, who were banking on a Romney victory. If Rove has any hope of playing a similar role in future elections, potential donors will want a serious explanation for what went awry this time around, and what will be done to avoid such a loss in the future.
Republicans at their annual meeting of governors in Las Vegas this week also analyzed their party’s loss. “We need to convert and get more Republicans because if we’re going to win independents and get Republicans and still lose an election, it’s because there’s too many damn Democrats out there,” said strategist Glen Bolger.
Take a look at Hardball’s Sideshow for the two takes on what went wrong for Mitt Romney.