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Super Tuesday & Expectations

Posted in Election 2012,Media Bias by Ryan on the March 7th, 2012

From the headlines and network analysis, you would get the impression that Mitt Romney didn’t have a very good night.  In reality, he won a majority of the contests, placing 1st in 6 of 10 states, 2nd in 3 and 3rd only in 1.

The narrative is that he somehow isn’t connecting with people, even though he now has more delegates than all the other candidates combined. And then some.  I think it is safe to say that Romney doesn’t have a “connection” problem, he has an “expectations” problem.  Expectations seem to have become Romney’s biggest challenge.

Some might argue that his inability to seal the nomination somehow represents a problem, irregardless of the fact that the current occupant of the White House was mired in a contested primary for months before becoming the nominee.

So when you take a step back and objectively look at what happened last night, Romney won the state that all eyes were on.  The rest of the races were essentially a wash.  Romney won everything he was expected to, with the exception of swapping North Dakota for Alaska, and Santorum won everything he was expected to.  And Gingrich of course won his home state of Georgia which really opens the path to the nomination for him because…..he has more delegates than Ron Paul or something.

A pattern has really emerged this cycle.  Romney is so far and away more polished, prepared, organized and funded than other candidates, that it isn’t that he can’t quite seal the deal with the voters, but instead he can’t seal the deal with the media that expects near perfection from him.  If he wins a state like Washington or Arizona by a huge margin, it is simple victory, unworthy of much attention.  If he barely wins his home state like Michigan, it is a near catastrophic miss.  And if he barely wins a swing state like Ohio, he apparently has fundamental problems with his campaign.

In every scenario presented, Romney wins, and yet, the reluctance to give him his due is palpable.  It is as though there is a new normal wherein Romney must pad with a sizable margin or else risk discredit for the victory.

If Romney wins the White House this November, expect the following possible headlines from these same political analysts and pundits distressed at how to explain Romney’s victory:

Thin Margin of Victory Raises Questions Over Mandate to Govern
Romney Won, But Unfavorables Still an Issue
Mitt’s Triumph Overshadowed by Narrow Win
Romney Wins, but do Voters Trust Him?

The media loves a horse race I suppose.

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