Thursday, April 5, 2012

Fish in a Barrel

 ("Haunted by the Primaries")

Yes, Romney has made a mess of the primary process, taking ludicrous positions to sooth the wild beasts on the far right. But it is far from certain that his past words will dictate the future course of the conversation.

One of the principal shortcomings of this administration has been its inability to be on the offensive. The Republicans have controlled the focus, leading to debate over such matters as the propriety of raising the debt ceiling and forcing the President to produce a copy of his long form birth certificate. It has been a waste of time and energy.

The Republican dominated super PAC monies will be directed at misdirection, to lead us not to an examination of Romney's shortcomings but to the failings of everything Obama. It is easy today to conceive that the next few months will be filled with Romney running over himself as he tries to backtrack from every position he has taken out of primary necessity. But this will not be like shooting fish in a barrel.

The course of our very fragile economy, a very political Supreme Court, Angela Merkel, Al Qaeda, or matters now unknown or unforeseen will give the Republicans plenty of ammunition to deflect attention from the etch-a-sketch man. If the history of the last three years is any predictor of the future, and if the Koch brothers dollars speak loudly, Romney's foibles may well turn out to be little more than mostly forgotten footnote.

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