Mitt Romney Is The Frontrunner In The Same Way That Donald Trump Was The Front Runner

Mitt Romney Is The Frontrunner In The Same Way That Donald Trump Was The Front Runner

It seems to be an item of faith that Mitt Romney is the nearly unstoppable frontrunner and all the other candidates in the GOP’s 2012 field are desperately trying to catch up. But in truth, while Mitt could technically be called the frontrunner, he’s not “the man to beat” in any meaningful sense.

Sure, Mitt can raise money, he’s done this before, and he could conceivably win the nomination.

Yet, Mitt has NEVER been a guy who generated a lot of enthusiasm. Any and all excitement he generated in 2012 was as a result of his being the last viable candidate who could beat John McCain. Today, when you talk to activists, bloggers, and Tea Party members about the candidates, the reactions to Romney generally range from somewhere between acidic dislike and apathy.

“But wait,” you’re probably saying, “isn’t Romney ahead in the polls?”

Yes, but his numbers generally fall in the 20%-25% range, which incidentally, is about the same place that Huckabee was at when people thought he might run. For awhile, even Donald Trump was running in that range.

Why is that?

Because it’s EXTREMELY early in the process and the numbers right now have more to do with name recognition than actual support. There are a lot of people being polled who may literally not be familiar with any of the candidates besides Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich yet. What you find in cases like that is that people tend to vote for the candidate they do know and since Paul is unelectable and Gingrich has imploded, that leaves Mitt Romney. The very fact that Mitt’s sitting in the 20%-25% range instead of the 35%-50% range tells you that a whole lot of Republicans who are familiar with him have already looked him over and said, “Thanks, but no thanks.”

Also remember that Mitt was a viable candidate in 2008, but that could fairly be called a five-way race between McCain, Romney, Huckabee, Thompson, and Giuliani. It’s hard to say which candidates will break from the pack and which ones will get into the race, but it does seem likely that we probably won’t be quite as fragmented as we were in 2008 this time around. Moreover, in 2008, Romney’s health care plan was brand new and Obamacare was just another socialist’s dream. Now, they’re both reality and having Romney as the nominee would mean taking a huge issue off the table for the GOP. After all, the public is going to roll their eyes at Mitt Romney calling for the repeal of Obamacare, when he essentially already passed it on the state level.

Long story short, Mitt is certainly a legit contender, but he’s a “frontrunner” in the same way that Donald Trump was — and that didn’t turn out so well for Trump.

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