If Romney wins on Tuesday, CBS political analyst John Dickerson has already prepared the media spin: “The secret of Romney's success: Ignore conservatives?” Even when the GOP wins, conservatives should be ignored.
“If Mitt Romney wins the election, it will be because he ignored conservatives,” began Dickerson.
After he won the primaries, many of the most prominent voices in the movement plead with him to run loud and proud as a conservative and to campaign overtly on conservative ideas. He never did that, and he's ending the campaign on a moderate note, a move his strategists believe will capture the disaffected Obama voters he needs to win the election.
Picking a conservative stalwart like Paul Ryan as a running mate signaled conservatism, right? Dickerson says no: “But picking Paul Ryan was not the same as running on Paul Ryan's programs. The Romney campaign boasted that selecting Ryan meant that Romney was making tough decisions and backing conservative solutions, but there was very little evidence that Romney and his campaign were actually going to campaign on those solutions.”
Dickerson concluded: “Mitt Romney has always seemed awkward playing the severe conservative. It's not his best stuff. He might lose this thing--the polls in the battleground states aren't looking good--but since Oct. 3 he's been going with his best pitch. He's no longer taking advice from the Scott Walkers of the world. He is listening to the more pragmatic Chris Christies. If Romney loses, those will be the battle lines for the next GOP contest.”
If Romney wins, he should ignore conservatives. If Romney loses, the battle lines next time will suggest he should have ignored conservatives. This is how liberal spin works.