Daily KOS isn't buying the Romney "Shellshocked" story either.
I knew there was something off about it. This article lays it out.
I still contend that the whole [italic]"We didn't see it coming" [/italic] bs is just political CYA spin. IT JUST DOESN'T JIVE. Yeah, yeah, yeah, we all want to laugh about the GOP being total self-absorbed out of touch idiots but let's get real.
They dialed back their own "internals" a couple days beforehand. Thier GOTV technology was crashing the day of the election. Paul Ryan was already wondering what other jobs he might do. They KNEW they had problems going into Tuesday.
However, something doesn't smell right about the story: even with their attempts to unskew their own polling, the Romney camp had to have known they had no better than a bank-shot chance of winning. Talking Points Memo's Josh Marshall shared some of my skepticism when he discussed the article, though he didn't connect the final dot. His contention:
[quote]Just too ridiculous. I can maybe believe that the Romney camp thought they had a fighting chance in Ohio — after all the final result was pretty close. I simply cannot believe that they thought they were in such a strong position that they were going to try for a decisive electoral college win.
What's the final dot? The fact that we got a look under the hood at the Romney camp's pre-election internals, if ever so briefly. Remember the leaked Romney internals on Monday afternoon before the election? To start out, set aside the lack of specificity of the internals (no topline numbers, just vague descriptions of the margin in some states), and the unusual place it was leaked to (the Daily Mail, one of the UK's right-wing scandal sheets, though not a Rupert Murdoch property); also, forget for a moment that leaked internals are leaked selectively and leaked for a reason, and often reflect an absolute best-case scenario rather than the most likely state of play for a race.
(cont. at link...)
And then something else happened... on Tuesday morning, some other anonymous Romney staffer reached out to Politico's Glenn Thrush and walked the leak back. Thrush's two tweets on the matter read:
[quote]The Romney campaign now saying internals attributed to their pollster Neil Newhouse showing Mitt up in Ohio, tied in WI, PA "are incorrect"
[quote]Romney spox, just now in an email: "The numbers attributed to [Neil Newhouse] are incorrect, hence, not his."
They didn't walk back the leak in order to substitute better polls -- better than the previous ones which indicated only a coin-flip chance of winning -- which is what a confident campaign would do. They simply withdrew the polls. Unless the subsequent walkback was a very strange way of messing with our heads, though, it was an open admission that they didn't have any actual polling that optimistic. The leaked polls had been a mirage, probably whipped up for a last-minute boost of reassurance to get their likely voters to the polls the next day. And since the alleged polls weren't that optimistic in the first place -- merely indicating that Romney had a puncher's chance in Ohio and a potential alternate route through Wisconsin -- to those capable of reading between the lines, the walkback seemed like a confession that they got nothin', and were about to lose.
I would bet everything I have the Willard camp was dead cold broadsided. They believed their own shiz. They had an inaugural web site prepared. A fireworks display set to go off. Enough has been said that there is n no question in my mind they did not see it coming.
Did you see the headquarters and the look on their faces? They were clearly stunned.
So why on earth would Team Romney, in CYA-mode following the election, start flogging the story to credulous media enablers that they were "shellshocked" by the results? It boils down to two alternatives for Romney's camp, neither of them good, both of which would be the basis for claims of political malpractice. [bold]Option A: [/bold]admit that you were operating in a bubble, that your pollsters were making faulty assumptions, and that despite the fact that your pollsters were coming up with numbers that didn't look like anyone else's, you were so reliant on gut feelings about voter enthusiasm that you didn't bother to seek a second opinion. (That's the CBS article, in a nutshell.)
[bold]Or Option B[/bold]: admit that your data looked much like everyone else's and that you're smart enough to know that all along that you were losing, but that the rules of the game prevented you from publicly admitting that. That's partially because, via the 'bandwagon effect,' it might depress turnout, but [bold]mostly because it would depress contributions from big money donors[/bold] who don't want to waste their money -- thus becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy because you then wouldn't have the money you'd need to even have a shot at winning.
Team Romney might be falling on its sword here and choosing Option A -- even though it has the effect of demolishing what remained of his pragmatic numbers-driven wonk brand, making him look like a self-absorbed fool selectively listening only to yes men -- because Option B would be even more unthinkable, in terms of Republican hopes for future races.
[bold]Do you think that the Sheldon Adelsons of the world would be willing to open up their checkbooks for future races, to the tune of tens of millions of dollars, when they find out that they've simply been lied to about Republican chances in order to keep the dollars flowing? [/bold]Remember, these are guys who've been promised that they were getting the unvarnished truth about the campaign -- the platinum-club insider access -- and now they're finding out that they're getting grifted, just as standard campaign operating practice. (As you no doubt know, Karl Rove is having parallel problems with his American Crossroads donors.)
No R3. Read the article.
They were covering their asses because to admit's one is a losing brand - and that you knew it all along- it to lie to ALL THOSE DONORS who were still pouring in money up until the last minute.
In the month of October alone $$40 MILLION dumped into MONTANA alone. Think about how much would be given to Romney and all those Senate races state by state.
Meanwhile, the figurehead at the top was likely kept in the dark because his leadership style is infallibility and he doesn't listen to anyone anyway. I do believe he was blind-sided.
Ok. I guess I can buy that Romney was kept in the dark but his campaign knew.
It's hard to say what the true story is because it was such a poorly run campaign. It was one misstep after another. I still can't believe they allowed Clint Eastwood to go out on the last night of the convention and wing it.
I agree with R6. If you've ever worked for an authoritarian boss and just want to keep your job you just do what they want and keep your mouth shut.
Oh for heaven's sake. Romney knew. Everybody in his campaign staff knew. AND the donors knew. They're not stupid. But they probably held out hope of some gaffe or last-minute save, but they knew without that, they were sunk. They probably read Nate Silver's column more than we did.
But it's what you do, if you're involved with a campaign. Have there been any where they announce they know they're gonna lose?
Rove was overconfident because he thought he had it fixed like in 2000 & 2004.
Romney was clueless because of the White Horse Prophecy.
Fox News viewers were overconfident because they live in a bubble. Note: Mitt is also in this category.
You people who think Romney didn't know or that his campaign didn't know are incredibly gullible. Do yourselves a favor and watch "The War Room." These are professional modern political operatives, not a bunch of hicks who believe the bullshit they shovel. Romney never took a real lead. That means there was no way he would win.
But I believe the big donors will still pour money into campaigns. It's a drop in the bucket to billionaires. This was the first major campaign since Citizens United. Theyve never had access to that kind of money before and need a little practice as to where to direct it to get the best result.
[quote] IT JUST DOESN'T JIVE.
BUT DOES IT JIBE?
Elohim promised him he would be president and then a God
Yeah, I thought Politico or the Times or some other paper had a quote about discussing the Ohio numbers and everyone knowing internally they were 5 points behind the day before the election.
So first, they're trying to cover up with donors (both sophisticated big-pocketd ones, and the "little people" who form the base), because they were making donation appeals right to the very last second, and defrauding people of their money isn't very nice.
Two, they're trying not to anger conservatives / the base with the fact that they were flat-out lying to them for the past two months, because that'd cause a bit too much uncomfortable recrimination.
I mean, I accept that after the first debate they could have genuinely believed they had a fighting chance, because there was a definite shift in the polls, and Obama's camp was definitely nervous. But after Obama corrected course and the polls stabilized, it was really too late.
In 2008, didn't McCain's campaign know even before Palin was selected as VP that they really didn't have a chance, and acknowledged her selection was a "Hail Mary" pass?