Will Mitt Snatch Defeat from the Jaws of Victory?
The 2012 Presidential Election is Mitt Romeny's to win or lose, and he seems to be demonstrating that he is more than capable of losing it. That harsh assessment is not mine alone. Conservative pundits such as Bill Kristol, George Will and Charles Krauthammer, and New Jersey Governor (and possible GOP Vice Presidential candidate) Chris Christy are all wondering why Governor Romney is not coming out swinging at a stunned and staggering Democratic opponent. Instead he seems to be pursuing a rope-a-dope strategy, leaving himself open to a lucky knockout punch from the President.
Heck, let's pile on the sports metaphors and cliches. The Romney Campaign has gone into a prevent defense. They are stalling, playing out the clock. They are playing for the tie in regulation, not the win. They are going for the field goal instead of the touchdown that would seal the victory. And finally, back to boxing--Romney is trying to win on points.
The flaw with this stragegy is best illustrated by the January 2012 Fiesta Bowl. The game was tied 38-38 when Stanford took possession on its own 20 yard line with two minutes and 35 seconds left in the 4th quarter. Quarterback Andrew Luck moved Stanford down the field; he was unstoppable; he was 5 for 5 on passing in that closing drive. For the game, he had been 14 for 14 passing to his tight ends. It was third down and two yards on the Oklahoma State 17. Stanford had two or three time outs remaining; Oklahoma had none. Instead of going for the first down and then perhaps for the winning touchdown, Stanford Coash David Shaw ran the clock down to three seconds and then took the ball out of the hands of the best quarterback in college football and handed it to his sophomore field goal kicker. The kicker missed. The kicker missed again in overtime. Oklahoma State kicked a touchdown in overtime and won the game.
Yes, readers, I have not gotten over it. I had to stick that last paragrah in this post, even though it deals with the Presidential election.
Back to boxing for the closing cliches, I mean lesson: When you have your opponent on the ropes you hit him hard with your best weapon. Eye of the tiger, killer instinct and all that.
Governor, you are too cautious, too afraid to offend. It is not enough to say you have a plan to make the economy better. Tell the people about it. Give them some details. It is not enough to say that you will end ObamaCare your first day in office. Explain how you will protect people with pre-existing health conditions who are afraid to switch jobs or start a new venture, because they may not be able to get medical insurance.
And when they lie about you, call them on it--call them out. In short, give 'em hell, Mitt. You will win.